Wednesday, November 10, 2004

More on Advent

Part of what we’re trying to do in raising our children, is to bring them up in an environment that is so suffused with Scripture and the story of our salvation, that our lives are ordered according to God’s Word, not just on the intellectual and spiritual planes, but physically as well. We want the reality of God’s covenant to impress itself on our children through every possible means - through reading and listening to God’s Word of course, but also through the senses of taste and smell and touch, and through the very rhythm of our lives.

In his article on The Seasons of the Church Year, Dr. Dennis Bratcher writes:
We keep track of time and seasons of the year by using calendars that provide us opportunities to observe, commemorate, and celebrate certain events or occasions. The changing seasons of the year also provide us with recurring opportunities to celebrate the Christian Faith in worship. The Christian church, following earlier Jewish tradition, has long used the seasons of the year as an opportunity for festivals and holidays, sacred time set aside to worship God as the Lord of life.

While Jewish celebration revolves around the Exodus from Egypt, the Christian Church year focuses on the life and ministry of Jesus. The sequence of festivals from Advent to Resurrection Sunday becomes an annual spiritual journey for worshippers as they kneel at the manger, listen on a hillside, walk the streets of Jerusalem, hear the roar of the mob, stand beneath the cross, and witness the resurrection! The rest of the church year provides opportunity to reflect on the meaning of the coming of Jesus and his commission to his people to be a light to the world.

He has also written an article on The Season of Advent: Anticipation and Hope, which gives more information on the origins of Advent and suggestions for celebrating it. There are also articles that explain all of the Church seasons more fully than I can, plus he tells why Advent wreaths traditionally have three purple candles and one pink candle.

Allison posted three links in the comments to this post at Richard's blog, the second of which is the same as the one I posted just above. The third link there also has recipes for some yummy-looking treats.

I'm still looking for traditions and recipes associated with the celebrations of Pentecost and Ascension, as I mentioned at Carmon's blog last month Any tips would be greatly appreciated! BBG Valerie is also looking for info on celebrating the Church's holy days.

Just got a notice in my email from Doorposts about a booklet they are offering, Advent and Christmas in Family Worship. This booklet is new to me, but I've used several of their resources and have been very pleased with them.

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