December 9, 2018
“Prepare the way of the Lord,make straight his paths. Luke 3:4
I wonder how many of you saw the opinion essay written by Catherine Price in the November 30 edition of the LA Times? She wrote about a 24-hour fast from cell phones, tablets and computers. She said that when she and her husband did this, it felt as though they unlocked a time-stretching superpower – it felt as though they had more time to talk, cook, clean, read, and do other things they really enjoy.
She quoted David Greenfield, a psychology professor at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine and founder of the Center for Internet and Technology Addiction. He said, “When we’re on our devices, we lose the ability to mark the passage of time. This phenomenon is called dissociation, and virtually everyone experiences it to some extent when on screens.”It’s true for me, and that’s why I am no longer on Facebook.
This Advent, when no adult seems to have enough time, try fasting from your phone. Start small – like at meals, or in the evening. Kids, too, need this, even more than adults. There are some other things you can do to make Advent a real preparation for Christmas. For example, I have special “Advent music” I only listen to during this season. I save the Christmas tunes for Christmas! If you send out Christmas cards, pray for each recipient before you sign and address the card. Sign up for a daily Advent reflection from FORMED.org or Matthew Kelly or Bishop Robert Barron to keep you focused on Scripture. Don’t feel obligated to attend every Christmas party to which you’re invited! Consider giving your timeand presenceto your loved ones, rather than presents. You’ll have to ditch your cell phone for that – and so will they!