I was recently in the southwest (El Paso and a bit north in New Mexico), and had a genuine experience of Advent. I stayed at a place that had practically no Christmas decorations, and there was no radio or TV to distract me. It was ideal conditions to experience Advent. Advent is all about looking towards something that hasn’t happned yet. It’s hard to do with all the Christmas decorations around – they try to make the feast day irrelevant, but is it the day that is really the only thing that is relevant. Christmas, in the end, cannot be celebrated until Christmas.

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