Monday, December 3, 2007

Advent Info

We decided to celebrate Christmas this year by celebrating traditional Advent along with the usual Advent calendar (candy), plus a fun Advent activity calendar.

Some of our friends didn't know much about Advent, so Kallie is going to share some of her research (which could be flawed, but this is what she gathered):

Advent means "coming" and therefore seen as the "coming of our Savior." It is a period of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebrations of the Nativity of Christ (Christmas) which begins on Advent Sunday. The fourth Sunday before Christmas Day (between November 27th and December 3rd) is Advent Sunday. Advent ends on December 24th (the Vigil of Christmas). Throughout the month, you prepare for the second coming of Christ while commemorating the first coming.

To help celebrate Advent, one candle is lit every Sunday. A wreath of evergreens is made (Target gives out free cut branches from the bottoms of their Christmas trees - perfect for winding together a wreath), symbolizing eternity. Three purple candles and one rose candle stand in a circle with the wreath. A 5th white or gold candle stands in the center as the Christ candle and is lit on Christmas Eve or Day. The first Sunday is about Hope, the second about Peace, and the fourth about Love (really, they're all about all of these - hope, peace, and love.) These are the three purple candles. The third Sunday represents Joy for Christ's coming and the rose-colored candle is lit. This Sunday (the third) is called Gaudete Sunday, which means "rejoice" for the Lord is coming. (The candles were originally lit to help mark time until the return of the sun through the winter.) Christ is the light that dispels the darkness (John 1:5) and the light of the world (John 8:12).

Our Advent calendar, pictured two posts ago (the red and green baggies with numbers) count down the days until Christmas. Inside each one is a candy to split and a Bible verse, correlating to the current Advent week (this week is about hope of the coming of Christ). We have also made a calendar for the month, which includes things like ice skating, making cookies or cider, and watching many Christmas movies.

We highly recommend celebrating the month of December with Advent. Don't get lost in spending money or Coca-Cola's Santa creation. Instead, focus on the reason we even have Christmas - a Christ that came to give us life.

Much love,


1 comment:

MomD said...

This is a beautiful way to celebrate the Lord's coming once and again. I had heard of the colored candles but didn't know what they meant. Thanks for sharing it!

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