December: Advent and Christmas
Advent is the four-week period leading up to Christmas. It starts on the Sunday nearest to 30th November and ends on the Sunday before 25 December. The word ‘Advent’ means ‘coming’. It is a time of expectation and preparation for the celebration of the birth of Jesus.
Purple is the liturgical colour used during Advent and is often displayed via hangings around the church, clerical vestments and through the colours of the candles on an Advent Wreath. Purple marks Christ’s royalty as ‘King of Kings’ and how we are in a season of preparation (also during Lent) Similarly, white is the liturgical colour for Christmas which depicts Christ’s purity and divinity.
Themes of Advent
Week 1: Hope
Week 2: Peace
Week 3: Joy
Week 4: Love
The Birth of Jesus Is Announced
In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy God sent the angel Gabriel to a town in Galilee named Nazareth. He had a message for a young woman promised in marriage to a man named Joseph, who was a descendant of King David. Her name was Mary. The angel came to her and said, “Peace be with you! The Lord is with you and has greatly blessed you!” Mary was deeply troubled by the angel’s message, and she wondered what his words meant. The angel said to her, “Don’t be afraid, Mary; God has been gracious to you. You will become pregnant and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High God. The Lord God will make him a king, as his ancestor David was, 33 and he will be the king of the descendants of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end!”… “I am the Lord’s servant,” said Mary; “may it happen to me as you have said.” And the angel left her.
In this Advent of expectation draw us together in unity,
that our praise and worship might echo in these walls
and also through our lives.
In this Advent of expectation draw us together in mission,
that the hope within might be the song we sing,
and the melody of our lives.
In this Advent of expectation draw us together in service,
that the path we follow might lead us from a stable
to a glimpse of eternity.