'O Come, O Come Emmanuel'
Here we have a beautiful rendition of the traditional hymn for Advent and Christmas, 'O Come, O Come, Emmanuel'. In your own time listen to the hymn and try to let the words filter into your mind and your heart.
Consider these three questions. You might like to jot any answers or thoughts down on a scrap of paper as a means of opening up to the broad theme of this retreat : 'The Challenge of Time'
1) What is it that would make you truly 'rejoice'? Would it be a change within our world, a connection with someone close, or a change within ourselves perhaps?
2) Think about the line '... drawing close and bid our sad divisions cease'. What might keep us separated from others and from God? Can those 'sad divisions' lie within us and prevent us from realizing our true selves?
3) The hymn delicately links the promise of peace with a moment in world history, the Incarnation. How difficult is it to grasp an alternative sense of time than the one which holds and controls us? Do you/we consider history as still having any influence on us?