Preparation and Love – Reflections on Advent from LOC Salt Lake City

Advent. A time of preparation for the coming of Jesus Christ. There are times when I wonder to myself, “What’s a good way to prepare for the coming of Jesus Christ?”

One of my favorite beginnings to the Christmas season is the day the Salt Lake City Chapter of The Ladies of Charity come together to wrap the gifts that we gather for the children of the families we serve. Throughout the year, we take care of supplementing food for twenty-nine families in the Salt Lake City area who would otherwise struggle to put food on the table. As you might imagine, they can’t provide Christmas gifts for their children either.

And that’s where we come in. We bring together toys, clothes, pajamas, and gift cards for these children who would otherwise be unable to have gifts for Christmas. By the time everything is in one spot, it’s quite the pile! Then, on the first Saturday of the month, we gather in the facilities at Our Lady of Lourdes and bring wrapping paper, tape, and scissors. We also bring food to share for a brunch potluck. We sip on coffee and chat and laugh and wrap and have a good time. After a couple of hours, the unorganized pile has become a beautiful bevy of gifts for the children. And the feelings in our hearts are brighter than the bows on those packages. Then the gifts get delivered to our families, the same way their food does– via our delivery crew who drive all over the valley getting all the goodies to their homes. This year they braved the roadways before and after a snowfall that delivered over a foot of snow in the Salt Lake City area. That shows love.
Advent. Jesus came to spread the Word of God. In my mind, the Word of God is love.

Now that I think about it, I can’t imagine a better way to prepare for the coming of Jesus Christ.

Lori Donnester
December, 2021

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