THE FOUR WEEKS OF ADVENT
Yesterday was the first Sunday of Advent. Advent is a time of preparation for the birth of Jesus. During the first two weeks of Advent we light the first two purple candles on the Advent wreath. The Third Sunday of Advent is called Gaudete (Rejoice) Sunday. On this day we celebrate that our waiting for the birth of Jesus on Christmas day is almost over. Rose (pink) is a liturgical colour that is used to signify joy, so we light the single pink candle on the third Sunday of Advent. Then on the fourth Sunday of Advent, the final purple candle is lit to mark the final week of prayer and penance as we wait expectantly for the soon-coming birth of the King of Kings.
The 1st Sunday of Advent symbolises Hope with the “Prophet’s Candle” reminding us that Jesus is coming.
The 2nd Sunday of Advent symbolises Faith with the “Bethlehem Candle” reminding us of Mary and Joseph’s journey to Bethlehem.
The 3rd Sunday of Advent symbolises Joy with the “Shepherd’s Candle” reminding us of the Joy the world experienced at the coming birth of Jesus.
The 4th Sunday of Advent symbolises Peace with the “Angel’s Candle” reminding us of the message of the angels: “Peace on Earth, Good Will Toward Men.”
On Christmas Day, the white candle, known as the “Christ Candle” is lit. This is a reminder that Jesus is the light of the world. He is our King and our Saviour.
You can find more information about Advent and fun activities for your children on the youth page of our parish website: Advent & Christmas | Church (ourladyandstedmund.org.uk)