I love “O Come, O Come Emmanuel.” It is a beautiful and haunting song of yearning, longing, and hoping from a return from exile. Historically, it is about Israel hoping for a return from exile imposed on them by the conquering Assyrians. But, for me, being stuck (temporarily) in the early part of the 21st Century ~ it can mean hope for a return from the exile of addiction, racism, domestic violence, illness, shame, alienation and estrangement. It is hope for a return from the alienation of Ferguson and Staten Island. I hope and long for restoration, wholeness and peace within and between us. And that song brings me, strangely, great sadness and comfort at the same time. “You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one…”

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