Advent is a season of preparation before Christmas. It is a time to lay aside all the business of the season – carol singing, bazaars, pageants, parties, shopping and school concerts – and remember the true meaning of Christmas. That is why we celebrate Advent for the four weeks before Christmas. Advent means ‘coming’ or ‘arrival’ and refers to the coming of Jesus. In Advent we see a threefold coming of the Messiah:
1. A celebration of His first coming – born to Mary as her Son, Jesus.
2. Preparation for His second coming at the end of the world as judge.
3. Celebration of His coming into our hearts through rebirth.
The Advent wreath with lighted candles is a graphic reminder that Jesus is the light of the world. The evergreen symbolizes the eternal life which Christ offers, and the circle represents Christ’s unending presence with us.
Here at HCC we follow the tradition of lighting the advent wreath candles each week. This year the weekly themes observed will be:
First Advent Week: Promise
Second Advent Week: Hope
Third Advent Week: Joy
Fourth Advent Week: Peace