The season of Advent marks the beginning of the Church year, which begins four Sundays before Christmas. The fourth week of Advent may be shortened depending on the day of the week on which Christmas falls.The word Advent comes from the Latin word “adventus” which means “coming.”
Advent has been celebrated in some form since at least the 4th century, and has always been a time of prayerful, reflective preparation for the celebration of the birth of Jesus. It is a time to ponder the mystery of the Incarnation, when God took on our humanity and lived among us.
One way many Christians celebrate Advent is by making an Advent wreath. A simple circle of greens reminds us that God’s love for us has no beginning or end. We place four candles in the wreath. Three are blue, the color of the Advent season, and the one for the Third Sunday in Advent is rose colored. The third Sunday is known as “Gaudete Sunday.” Gaudete means rejoice. It is more than halfway through Advent, and is noted as a special time of celebration and anticipation as Christmas draws nearer.
This year’s Online Advent Calendar begins on Sunday, November 27. If you have not already subscribed, you can sign up to get a daily email with reflections and prayers during Advent by using the email subscription form on the right hand side of this website. Or you can follow the daily postings on Facebook.