By: Rev. Fr. Peter Kamomoe
The word “Advent” has been derived from the Latin word adventus, which means “coming,”. It is a period of celebration and anticipation of the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ; a period of preparation to commemorate the dawn of our salvation through the Nativity of our Saviour. The first two Sundays during Advent (through December 16th) usually look forward to Christ’s second coming, and then the last two Sundays (December 17th – 24th) look backward to remember Christ’s first coming. The Catholic liturgical year begins at the beginning of Advent.
What we learn from the Advent Wreath
Evergreen leaves – symbolize life and freshness
Let us remain fresh with the grace of God
The prickly leaves – Remind us of the thorns of Christ-His deep love shown in the pain he suffered
The circle of the Wreath
It shows the infinity of God. No beginning and no end. Alpha and Omega. First and the last of everything we do.
what we learn from the advent candles
1st week of Advent
Prophecy candle or Candle of Hope-Purple colour
Lit on the first Sunday of Advent; Signifies virtues of faith, love and HOPE-cardinal virtues that need to embellish our Christian lives.
“And again, Isaiah says, ‘The Root of Jesse will spring up, one who will arise to rule over the nations; the Gentiles will hope in him.’ May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” ~ Romans 15:12-13
2nd week of Advent
Bethlehem candle or candle of preparation -Purple colour
Lit on the second Sunday of Advent; It signifies preparation for the coming of our Saviour, Lord Jesus Christ!
“As is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet: ‘A voice of one calling in the desert, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him. Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth. And all mankind will see God’s salvation. ‘~ Luke 3:4-6
3rd week of Advent
The Shepherd Candle or The Candle of Joy -Pink colour
Lit on the third Sunday of Advent-Gaudete Sunday; It is at this time that the Shepherds received the great news!
It symbolizes JOY- a virtue that needs to be constantly displayed and nurtured
“…and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.’ Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.’ When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” ~ Luke 2:7-15
4th week of Advent
The Angel candle or the candle of love
The angels announced the good news of a Savior!
“…I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord” ~ Luke 2:10b-11
God sent his only Son to earth to save us, because he loves us!
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” ~ John 3:16-17
Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” (Luke 2:13–14 )
On Christmas Eve, the white candle is lit. This candle is called the “Christ Candle” and represents the life of Christ that has come into the world. The color white represents purity. Christ is the sinless, spotless, pure Savior. Those who receive Christ as Savior are washed of their sins and become whiter than snow.
“Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the Lord. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.” (Isaiah 1:18)
Let us deepen our awareness that God wants us to have Him as the center of all that we do
Hope! Peace! Joy! Love!
Gracious Christmas Season