Sunday, December 3, 2023 is the beginning of this year's season of Advent. The first Sunday in Advent also begins a new liturgical year. During this season we expectantly await and prepare for the celebration of the Nativity of the Lord (Christmas). Each of the four Sundays of Advent has a different theme. The first Sunday is Hope, followed by Peace, Joy (Gaudete Sunday), and Love.
We would like to share some free resources (below) that we hope will help you to immerse yourselves more fully into this beautiful season of hope.
This video from Busted Halo provides a fantastic overview of the Advent season and is only two minutes long.
The Advent Wreath
In the middle ages, the Germanic peoples began incorporating a lighted wreath into the Christian season of Advent. It didn’t gain widespread popularity until the 1800's and it wasn’t until the 1900's that German immigrants brought the tradition to America. source
This printable handout from Loyola Press includes information on making your own, as well as explaining the symbolism behind the Advent wreath. It also includes blessings and prayers for each week.
The Advent Calendar
Most of us are familiar with some sort of Advent Calendar, usually the kid's version. You know the ones where you open the little cardboard door and get a piece of chocolate each day to countdown the days until Christmas. The version I'd like to share with you from Busted Halo is a digital Advent calendar. Each day another link will be unlocked revealing a "DailyJolt" (quote or thought of the day), and a "MicroChallenge" such as a short reflection or task to undertake. Click on this link to be brought to the calendar.
There are many wonderful resources online and in your parish about the season of Advent. Our parish also offers opportunities for spiritual growth through programs such as our Advent Twilight Retreat and Adult Faith Formation sessions. Check the homepage or bulletin for details. We encourage you to find out more and more fully immerse yourself in the beauty of the season, as we joyfully await the Nativity of the Lord.
Have a Blessed Advent!