Saturday, December 1, 2007


Advent is a time of waiting and so the symbols seem to center around waiting. The purple that we use to decorate for this season puts us in anticipation. We are waiting for the big event. It is something like having a sheet over a new sculpture and we are waiting until it is unveiled and can have the party.

An advent wreath is really a calendar. It was originally intended us a focal point of prayer that is non-liturgical. It was meant for the home and refectory. It consists of a wreath of evergreens with four candles. Each week of advent an additional candle is lit to mark the great countdown until Christmas. Traditionally (but not necessarily so) three of the four candles are purple while one, the one that marks the third week of advent (or Gaudete Sunday) is Rose. Gaudete means “Rejoice!” and is the first word of the mass in Latin that day (the introit). We are celebrating that we are half way to Christmas and so we use a lighter shade of purple (not pink!)

You do not even need to have wreath. If you are radical (and if you are celebrating advent instead of Christmas you already are) you can have an advent log – or be creative. An advent calendar, at least one with a faith-filled theme, can fulfill much the same purpose.

Can’t wait to put your tree up? Consider having a Jesse Tree. Decorate your tree with symbols that represent Jesus’ family line. This idea comes from the prophecy, “There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse.” Notable personages for the tree would include Noah, Jacob, Moses, Ruth, Jesse, David, Mary, Jospeh, etc. . . Doing this you learn about these people and their symbols and then later can decorate the tree with all of your regular bulbs.

Whatever you do, help bring prayer and an awareness of the season to your home and may this advent bring you many blessings!


Anonymous said...

I was thinking of how we will receive an Advent calendar tomorrow after Mass, with daily Scripturals to muse and employ. However, I've also just thought of how much has changed since our parishes have clustered, and wondered what if I can't bank on someone doing my Advent homework for me this year?? :-) I went looking online for a help, and came away with these: From the Jesuits. From EWTN. From the Franciscans.

Anonymous said...

Oh, and.. this.

(btw, I've found that right-clicking on "Comments" on Adam's Ale's home page, and selecting "Open in New Window" gives one a window larger than the pop-up one, which one can then click backward and forward in as well--something I fear most Kindergarteners have already learned..what can I say--a techie I'm not!)

Adoro said...

Not necessarily. If I open the combox in a new window, it doesn't click forward and back. It just opens in a larger window. That's it.

You might have a different operating system or different settings that allows your particular technical discovery.


Adrienne said...

On Gaudete Sunday, our Father Bill's vestment is, shall I dare say, not one of the best. It really is more pink than rose. He hates it so I always make a point every year to compliment him on his nice pink "outfit" --- then to make it worse I make sure everyone within 10 feet also says something nice about his "pink" vestments.

I figure it brings more joy to what should be a slightly more joyful day.

justme - I'm going to try that. I have gotten in the habit of doing my comments in Word and cutting and pasting. I really need that spell check. I also need to find out how to put a link in a combox.

Vincenzo said...

Adrienne wrote: "I also need to find out how to put a link in a combox."

Like this:

<a href="">The Holy See</a>

That will appear like this inside of the comment window:

The Holy See

Easter Almuena said...

Thank you for this post, Fr. V! This was added to my Advent post. God bless you abundantly!