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Written in a Nazi prison in 1945, shortly before Delp, a Jesuit priest, was hung for opposing Hitler's regime:

There is perhaps nothing we modern people need more than to be genuinely shaken up. Where life is firm we need to sense its firmness; and where it is unstable and uncertain and has no basis, no foundation, we need to know this too and endure it. We may ask why God has sent us into this time, why he has sent this whirlwind over the earth, why he keeps us in this chaos where all appears hopeless and dark and why there seems to be no end to this in sight. The answer to this question may be that we were living on earth in an utterly false and counterfeit security. And now God strikes the earth till it resounds, now he shakes and shatters; not to pound us with fear, but to teach us one thing -- the spirit's innermost moving and being moved...

The Advent message comes out of an encounter of man with the absolute, the final, the gospel. It is thus the message that shakes -- so that in the end the world will be shaken. {Alfred Delp}


~From Ten Minute Advent Retreats via