Musings of an Italian-American Catholic wife, mother, and writer

Musings of an Italian-American Catholic wife, mother, and writer

Sunday, December 2, 2012

First Sunday of Advent (and introducing our Advent wreath 2012)


The Advent wreath is an important part of our family's celebration of Advent, and every Sunday we gather for prayers and the lighting of a candle.

It's a beautiful tradition which brings together the family in an act of faith, and for me it's also a chance to create a new wreath every year. In the past I have used bedspring coils, a section of a corncrib, a piece of driftwood, baskets, platters, and framed art to create Advent wreaths which are unique in appearance, but true to the meaning behind the tradition.

This year my inspiration was a vintage tray, so I started with that. While I usually incoporate the pink and purple colors with ribbons instead of candles, this year I decided not to include those colors at all. Instead, I focused on some of the other symbolic elements of the Advent wreath, which I underlined in the list below:

THE SYMBOLISM BEHIND THE ADVENT WREATH:

evergreens
= everlasting life
holly = crown of thorns
pine cones/nuts/pods = life and resurrection
four candles = four weeks of Advent
color purple = prayer, penance, preparatory sacrifices, royalty
color pink = rejoicing
circle = eternity of God; God's never ending love
wood = the manger; the cross
Progressive lighting of candles = expection and hope surrounding Christ's birth
 
Advent Wreath 2012 (w/ vintage tray)
 
 
 
Some past Advent wreaths ...
 
Advent Wreath 2011 (beach driftwood and framed scenes of Advent)
 
 



Advent wreath 2010 (w/ wooden candlebra found in an antique store)



Advent wreath 2007 (corncrib and bedspring coils)


 
One of the wreaths I made for a talk I gave on Advent and the tradition of the Advent wreath 
(Part of the talk included how to make an Advent wreath from things around the house. For a demonstration, I constructed five different wreaths during my talk.)
 

 
So, tonight we'll light our first candle and begin the Advent season with this blessing.

There is beauty and solemnity in the lighting of a candle, and when we gather as a family around our Advent wreath to pray, we become part of a ritual as old as time itself.

1 comment:

tiziana said...

Sono tutti meravigliosi ed è molto bello il significato dei simboli.
La luce di queste candele brillerà anche per me fino a Natale.
Grazie Bia.