Jeff Dietrich of the Los Angeles Catholic Worker shares his story at the National Catholic Reporter, about risking arrest with Occupy LA after being moved by Advent readings and a special appeal for help at Mass:
I had not planned on coming here but someone stood up at church on Sunday and pleaded with the congregation to join him at 12:01 a.m., the police deadline for dispersal of the LA Occupiers of City Hall Plaza. The readings for that Sunday, the first Sunday of Advent, were from the Gospel of Mark: “Stay awake, don’t fall asleep for you do not know the hour or the time of the master’s return! I say to you what I say to all, stay awake!” It occurred to me at that moment, like a flash of lightning: Where are people staying awake? Where are people not sleeping? Where are people keeping vigil? Certainly not in this church and mostly not in any church for that matter. The readings have nothing to do with keeping vigil in quiet candlelit spaces of sacred sanctuaries. The readings are about being awake to the historical moment; the readings are about discerning the movement of the spirit in the present.