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  • Jean Zaru, ed. Helene Pollock

Introduction to Advent Devotional 2016

The Light Shining in the Darkness, that Cannot be Overcome

During this time of Advent preparation for the birth of Jesus, I offer you a message of hope. This is a hope embodied in the spirit and will of all those who refuse to submit to the forces of oppression, violence and injustice, to the structures of domination, colonialism and foreign occupation. This is a hope embodied in truth-telling -- in a Truth that is eternal.

It is not easy to answer the call to truth-telling when confined to a fragile and mortal body. But I continue to carry on because I feel compelled to bear witness to what is happening in my land, to expose the principalities and powers, to bring them out into the light, to expose them and thereby undercut their power of falsehood.

Truth-telling necessarily struggles to forge a new discourse that includes critique from the margins. Therefore, it is essential that we make contact in each and every place with the dispossessed, the prisoners, the immigrants, the displaced, the denied and the discouraged. We must be intentional in creating spaces for them to share their stories, to grieve, to express their anger and hope. And we must create space in our hearts to truly hear and allow their stories to shape us. As a Japanese poet once wrote: "The world grows stronger as each story is told." Storytelling makes our world stronger because stories reveal the complexity of our truth.

My hope is that during this Advent season each of us may continue to make space to listen, hear the untold and forgotten stories, then dare to tell the truth and steadfastly live it out.


When have you stood aside, made space for or listened to voices from the margins?

What empowers you to truth telling?


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