LIGHTING THE ADVENT WREATH
Advent comes from the Latin word ‘adventus’ meaning ‘Coming.’ Advent begins the church year starting four Sundays before Christmas. The season of Advent has been set aside as a time of preparation since the 6th century. Advent is a time for preparing for Christ’s second coming, even as we remember and celebrate his first coming at Christmas. This is why the colour of the season of Lent is used, purple or blue, the colours also of Lent, of forgiveness and repentance.
Traditions vary from church to church, but usually one week, either week three or four in Advent, is set aside as more celebratory than others. Rose is the colour of this week rather than purple, which is why a rose candle is used. In our churches we will celebrate this week on the fourth Sunday of Advent, when we remember Mary, the mother of Jesus to whom is attributed that great song of joy, the Magnificat.