Advent: Light in the Midst of Growing Darkness

Posted by & filed under Grace Notes.

By Kathy Will
Music and Worship Coordinator

advent wreathWe begin our church year with Advent, a season of preparing for Christmas and at the same time looking toward the Second Coming of Christ. The liturgical color of blue we use in our altar vestments symbolizes the hope and waiting that is expressed in many of the appointed Bible readings for this season.

Long ago the people in northern Europe made the first Advent wreaths, bending evergreen branches, a symbol of everlasting life, into a circle, representing eternity. As we light a new candle each Sunday in Advent we are reminded of the gradual revelation to Israel of the coming of Christ.

On the third Sunday we light the “rose” or pink candle. The color rose comes from the ancient “Rejoice” introit of the third Sunday, reminding us of the great joy of Christ’s coming into the world. The rose candle is often called the “Mary Candle” for Jesus’ mother.

The center candle is the “Christ Candle” and is lit for the first time on Christmas. This reminds us that Christ is the light of the world and brings light into our darkness.

Many families light an Advent Wreath in their home as part of their daily devotions. Check out the article by Dixie Stephen on the Grace Website describing how she used an Advent Wreath when her boys were little. There are also many resources available in the Commons to help you with your own observance of Advent.

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