Hope Beyond Hope: Winter Solstice 2023

During the darkest periods of history, quite often a small number of men and women, scattered throughout the world,
have been able to reverse the course of historical evolution.

This was only possible because they hoped beyond all hope.

–Roger Schultz, Abbot of Taize

1st Reading, from The Soul of Christmas by Thomas Moore

The Solstice is a time of incubation, change and finally of renewal or rebirth. Many people today feel an underlying anxiety due to world events and the challenges of getting along in a complicated world. Solstice offers symbolic hope that there may be a turn in the ‘weather.’ The turn could take us to more genuine peace, justice, and community—key values in the Jesus teachings and qualities we expect in a renewed life turning more toward the light than the dark.


Reflection Questions

  • What stories from your life or family reflect what it means to hope beyond hope?
  • What does hope look like for you?
  • What do you hope for?
  • How do you seek to live inside your hope?
  • How do you see hope as a catalyst for growth and transformation in your life?
  • Who are the people in your life who nurture hope in you?
  • On this Winter Solstice, what hope do you carry for yourself, your family, your faith community, the country, and the world?

Prayer on the Way to the Labyrinth

O Radiant Dawn,
Creator of Darkness and Light,
Be with us as we walk the labyrinth this Winter Solstice night.
Guide our feet on the path to peace and protect us on our way.
As we seek the center, we long for the light that will never fade.
We make this prayer in the name of Jesus, the Light.


Forty people attended in-person and 11 joined the live stream of the Renewal Center's 2023 Winter Solstice celebration on Dec. 21, Fr. Joe Nassal, CPPS, led the reflection.


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