Advent – Latin word meaning “coming”
Advent is the season of preparation to celebrate of the Nativity of Jesus at Christmas as well as the return of Jesus at the second coming.
The four Sundays of Advent in Christian churches, the Bible readings and prayers concentrate on preparing congregations for the coming of Christmas. Often on Advent Sunday, the Sunday closest to November 30, there is a special service called an Advent Carol service where the readings and carols lead us from the darkness of the sin of Adam, through all the prophesies in the Old Testament which tell of the coming of the Messiah, to a climax at the great moment where Mary agrees to be the mother of Jesus and her great prayer, the Magnificat (a hymn of praise) is sung. Some churches may erect a Jesse tree, which is an evergreen tree on which are hung symbols of Jesus from the Old Testament. For example, the Messiah was often described by the prophets as a lion of Judah, so the symbol of a lion is hung on the tree. More common however is for churches to have an Advent wreath. This is a circle of evergreen branches which symbolises that life is eternal. The wreath is often tied with purple ribbon as purple is a colour associated with repentance in the Christian church and during the season of Advent Christians are encouraged to repent of their sins in order to be ready to welcome the birth of Jesus on Christmas Day. On the wreath there are four candles. One candle is lit on the first Sunday of Advent, two on the second Sunday, and so on until all four candles are lit on the Sunday before Christmas. In the past, the season of Advent was marked by fasting and great solemnity, as a symbol of repentance and as a means of preparation for the great celebration and feasting which was to take place at Christmas. Nowadays however, for many people this season has got “lost” in the rush and hectic nature of the lead up to Christmas which has become a material, as well as spiritual festival.
Faith, Hope and Love: Glasnevin Parish invites you to journey with them through Advent as we prepare for the coming of Christ. On Tuesday 11 and 18 December please drop into Our Lady of Dolours Church, Glasnevin between 6.00-6.30pm for reflections, music and silence.
Knocklyon – Advent Reflection will take place on Saturday 15 December after 10.00am Mass.
Online Advent Retreat 2018 – Reflect on the Advent and Christmas Gospels in a way that helps shine God’s light on your life. Watch one online talk per week in your quieter moments (Cost €40). Begins Sunday 2 December – REGISTER NOW: www.prioryinstitute.com (for more information call 01 404 8124 or www.prioryinstitute.com
more to follow in coming days….
Diocesan Advent Service Homily
– 1 December 2018
Opening Words Sun sets, evening descends, light fades, day draws to a close.
I light a lamp and a new glow streams across my day.
Gathering Song Warm the Time of Winter (Lori True)
All sing: Holy light, warm our night, warm the time of winter
Holy light, warm our night, warm the time of winter
(Procession includes 10 Lanterns)
Blessing of Advent Wreath
Your Church joyfully awaits the coming of its Saviour.
Who enlightens our hearts and dispels the darkness of ignorance and sin.
Pour out your blessings upon us as we light the candles of this wreath;
May their light be a comfort to those who suffer today,
May their light give us hope in these dark days
May their light reflect the love of Christ who is Lord, for ever and ever. Amen.
Opening Prayer Let us pray,
All say: Lord, open our hearts in welcome.
Remove the things that hinder us from embracing Christ with joy.
May the glow of this WinterLight guide us on our Advent journey.
We ask this in the Spirit, through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Gesture of Welcome
Scripture “Do not be afraid Mary, for you have found favour with God.”
Reflecting on the words of the Angel Gabriel, “Do not be afraid!, spoken to Mary in St Luke’s Gospel, Pope Francis asks young people to name their own fears. Today, he says, there are many youngsters who continuously photo-shop their images or hide behind false identities, in an attempt to adapt to artificial and unattainable standards.
Song You Are Mine (David Haas)
All sing: Do not be afraid I am with you, I have called you each by name.
Come and follow me, I will bring you home.
I love you and you are mine
Advent Calendar 2018
See this years Advent Calendar 2018 from the Irish Bishops Conference in Maynooth
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