First Sunday of Advent

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Advent is about Jesus’s coming or arrival and its name comes from the Greek parousia and the Latin adventus. It is a season of joyful anticipation and preparation. It is a celebration of the anticipation and preparation for the feast of the Nativity of Jesus, and it is anticipation and preparation for Jesus’s second coming. It is a meditative reaffirmation that Jesus is present in our world and that he will come again in glory. In its theme of preparation and anticipation, it gives us the ideal time to meditate on who exactly we prepare for much in the way new parents prepare for the arrival of their infants and the way they get their house fit for that delivery. To prepare they must know what that infant’s needs are, and what needs correction. Again, in preparation for Jesus, we too are called to examine who Jesus is, and what we must do to be ready for him. The colors of the Advent season are a reminder of purpose of the season. The purple of advent on one hand is the color of Lent and a reminder of penance or preparation. The color Purple is also the color of royalty; a reminder of Christ the King, or Christ meaning messiah. Eastern Orthodox Churches retain the fasts during the advent season which are similar to the Lenten fasts, yet also different reflecting the differing spirituality of the Advent season. Advent is its own season. It is not part of the Christmas season, no matter how much the merchants would try to convince us otherwise. Christmas hymns are not sung during this season, they are reserved for Christmas which starts the Christmas season. Christmas day is not the end of the Christmas season, but rather its beginning. Christmas and Advent are two distinct seasons, each with their own meaning. Advent, the season of preparation, and anticipation begins today

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