Celebrate Advent

Preparing for the One Who Was, Who Is, and Who Is To Come

“The Coming One”

Christmas is a season that can be celebrated in many different ways, as your circumstances and preferences lead you.  Christmas is especially a time for families, but if yours isn’t close you can bring together a group of people to share special times and festivities.  Follow family tradition that has come through generations, add your special touches that make it yours, or make up your tradition as you go along.  However you do it, make the keeping of Advent a part of your Christmas Celebration.

Looking back on my childhood, it seems to me that Christmas was always a wonderful, magical time almost as though each year time stopped for a few days while my family kept Christmas.  No matter what our family difficulties, they never seemed to affect Christmas. We always had some gifts, but I don’t think they were ever the most important part for me.  I learned to love the Baby Jesus, and to understand that he was God come to earth. Christmas had many ingredients, some having to do with family and aunts and uncles coming to stay in an already too-crowded house.  What fun that was! Christmas was baking of course, and secret wrapping, and huge boxes of fruit and nuts. Christmas also included the church with its beautiful tree, and the annual Christmas program, which I credit with a love for the sound of Scripture being recited, and an ability to speak in public. Christmas was singing Carols and the Christmas story at church, and looking at the stars walking back home, and imagining the Wise Men eagerly following that one. Christmas was believing the message of the angels, and accepting the Good News for myself.  My mother made Christmas like that for us, because she herself never lost the wonder and awe of Christmas and she passed that excitement and faith to me.

Sadly, I know that Christmas is not like that for many people, children as well as adults.  We can reach out to others at this season of the year with the love of the Incarnate Christ and the true Spirit of Christmas.  Be creative in finding ways to infuse this Christmas season with Christian meaning and symbolism.  Teach the Scriptures, memorize Luke’s account of the birth of Christ, sing the ancient carols and learn new ones, reach out to others and include them in your celebration.  My young niece Joanna contributes significantly to my enjoyment of Christmas with her original plays and songs, which she writes and presents.  When children participate in creating traditions, and in passing on the Good News of Christmas, they truly know it’s meaning for themselves.

This Advent Celebration guide is written in the hope that believers will be encouraged to celebrate Christmas together in a Christian way. The four weeks before Christmas can be used to focus on the promised Messiah, absorbing the Old Testament predictions and their fulfillment in Jesus Christ.  You can make Advent a time of personal soul-searching, confession, and spiritual revival.   It is my hope that you will be encouraged to pursue the disciplined reading of Scripture during this season of Advent and Christmas. May it also be an encouragement to celebrate in community the Christian festivals.

Julia Castle, Aquila and Priscilla Study Center

Celebrating Advent Historical Observance

Celebrating Advent Questionable Origins

Celebrating Advent Unchristian Observances

Celebrating Advent Christian Celebration

Celebrating Advent Thankfulness for God’s Gift

Celebrating Advent Preparation for the Coming One

Celebrating Advent Christian Traditions for Celebration

Celebrating Advent Celebrating God’s Gift

Celebrating Advent Building Christian Community

Celebrating Advent Symbolism of the Candles

 

December 2017

December 3, 2017 1st Sunday Prophecy Candle

December 4, 2017

December 5, 2017

December 6, 2017

December 7, 2017

December 8, 2017

December 9, 2017

December 10, 2017 2nd Sunday Bethlehem

December 11, 2017

December 12, 2017

December 13, 2017

December 14, 2017

December 15, 2017

December 16, 2017

December 17, 2017 3rd Sunday Shepherd

December 18, 2017

December 19, 2017

December 20, 2017

December 21, 2017

December 22, 2017

December 23, 2017

December 24, 2017 4th Sunday Angel

December 24, 2017  Christmas Eve

December 25, 2017 Christmas Day

December 26-31, 2017 Week following Christmas

December 31, 2017 New Year’s Eve

January 1, 2017 New Year’s Day

 

Contact

Julia Castle
juliaac@gmail.com