First Sunday of Advent – November 27
Advent Sunday, also known as the First Sunday of Advent or First Advent Sunday, more the Western Christian Church, is the first day of the liturgical year and the start of the season of Advent.
The first Sunday of Advent is a time of waiting and preparing for Christmas. Advent lasts for four weeks, starting on the fourth Sunday before Christmas. It is tradition to lit the first of the four candles on the Advent wreath. The Christian hearts rejoice with hopeful expectations at celebrating the coming of the Lord Jesus in the flesh on Christmas day.
The word Advent means coming in Latin. During the 4th and 5th centuries, Christians would spend 40 days in prayers and fasting to prepare for the celebration. Advent is a time to prepare for the upcoming celebrations of the Nativity (birth) of Jesus Christ. It’s time set aside in our religious calendar to remind us how important the coming of Christ is for all of us personally. It provides us an opportunity to gain a better understanding of our faith. That better understanding will help us truly enjoy Christmas, all 12 days of it, from Christmas Day to Epiphany. For as Christians the true celebration of Christmas begins with the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
The liturgical seasons of Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany are rich occasions to reconnect with scripture and renew faith in the Risen Christ. From the Incarnation to the Second Coming of Jesus, and all the prophecy and history, in between lies a grand story filled with lush symbols that reinforce God’s unwavering promises of hope, love, joy, and peace.
Suggested Read: Christ the King
The first Sunday of Advent!
The traditions of Advent are materialized by the Advent wreath. The wreath is topped by four candles which symbolize the four Sundays leading up to Christmas. Each candle is lit on each of the Sundays before Christmas. The last candle to be lit announces that Christmas is very near. Sometimes, the wreath decoration can also include holly, mistletoe, and Christmas ornaments.
The decorative wreath can be placed on a table surrounded by candles, or hung on the front door or windows of the house. Today we celebrate Advent over four weeks leading up to Christmas.
When is Advent
Advent begins this year on Sunday, November 27. The season lasts for four Sundays and the following weeks. This takes us through the remainder of November and every day in December, until Christmas Eve.
There are certain colors associated with advent as well. The purple color during the first weeks is associated with penance and the rose color during the last week is rose for joy and happiness. There are no rules around fasting for advent though some people do choose to fast during the weeks leading up the Christmas.
Today, store-bought Advent calendars usually have 24 or 25 slots on them, and when each is opened a photo or small candy or gift is revealed. One is opened each day until the Advent period is over and Christmas Eve arrives.
In this season of Advent, let us wait for the arrival of our Lord.
Suggested Read: Christian Festival