- Advent always begins four Sundays before Christmas, on the Sunday closest to the feast of St Andrew the Apostle (November 30th).
- Advent continue until December 24th.
- If Christmas Eve is on a Sunday it is also the fourth Sunday of Advent. Christmas Eve officially begins at sundown when it falls on a Sunday.
- Advent is the beginning of the liturgical calendar year. Advent has been the beginning of the church year since the 900ís.
- The word Advent comes from the Latin word adventus, which means coming.
- In the early church Advent was a time of prayer and confession. Today, itís more a time for preparation and anticipation of the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ.
- The season of Advent has both a joyful and penitential spirit.
- The traditional color of Advent is purple (or violet), which symbolizes the penitential spirit. Purple also symbolizes royalty, and we are awaiting the arrival of a King Ė our Lord, Jesus Christ.
The Advent Wreath
- The Advent wreath is made up of two parts Ė the wreath and the candles.
- The wreath is made of evergreen, which symbolizes growth and everlasting life.
- The wreathís shape of a circle represents eternity since it has no beginning and no end. It also symbolizes the immortality of the soul and the everlasting life found in Jesus Christ.
- The Advent wreath has three purple candles and one pink candle. They represent the four weeks of our preparation before the coming of our Lord.
- Each week represents one thousand years, so in total four thousand years from the time of Adam and Eve until the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
- Every week of Advent one candle is lit. As each new candle is lit during the journey of Advent, we draw closer to the coming of our Lord and are reminded of Christís presence through the light of the candles burning brighter each week.
- The first week of Advent one purple candle is lit; this represent hope.
- The second week of Advent another purple candle is lit; this signifies love.
- The third week of Advent the pink candle is lit; this represents joy.
- The fourth week of Advent the last purple candle is lit; this symbolizes peace.
- The lighting of the candles not only symbolizes the Lordís first coming, but also the anticipation of his second coming.
Peace in Christ,
© Melissa Knoblett-Aman
Advent and Christmas Wisdom from St. Francis of Assisi -- Buy from Amazon