ADVENT REFLECTIONS: THE TREASURES OF VATICAN II
“Before it can begin, all dialogue presupposes that an attitude of sympathy
and openness between those who take part has been brought about
by more or less spontaneous contacts and exchanges,
in the details of ordinary daily life. It is in the context of human relationships, which can be varied, that dialogue of whatever sort usually takes its origin and form.”
(Decree on Ecumenism)
By Missy Lang
Open and honest dialogue has been a staple of my family life for as long as I can remember. I learned at an early age that the basis for open and honest dialogue is TRUST. Trust that the other participant respects and is willing to try to understand your point of view and most importantly that the other participant is paying attention.
As I reflect on the quote, I realize that this Advent my attentions should focus on listening and appreciating the dialogue I share with friends, family and colleagues. Recently, my interaction with friends, family and colleagues has become limited by my fascination with technology and the “easier” ways to communicate. Texting, email and social media limit the commitment and trust that relationships need in order to flourish. Think about it: when we text or email, we send statements that are static and straightforward. Face to face interaction is dynamic and interactive. I can’t remember a time that I thought, “Wow, I have an amazing text conversation with…”
During this Advent, may each of us focus on how we communicate and interact with our friends, family and colleagues.
Missy Lang has been a member of the Mercyhurst community since 1995 when she arrived as a freshman biology major. She is the director of the Mercyhurst West campus and a former Mercy Volunteer Corps volunteer.