The Story Of The Advent Wreath
The Advent wreath with its candles symbolises the passage of the four weeks of Advent in anticipation of the celebration of Christmas. It is a symbol of continuous life and the circle reminds us of God's unending love and the eternal life found in Christ.
The Advent wreath typically holds four candles, each representing a different theme or aspect of the Advent season.
1. First Week (Hope):
The first candle is traditionally purple and symbolises hope. It is called the "Prophecy Candle" in remembrance of the prophets, primarily Isaiah, who foretold the birth of Jesus.
The lighting of this candle expresses the hope and anticipation of the Messiah's coming.
2. Second Week (Peace):
The second candle is also purple and is often called the "Bethlehem Candle" as a reminder of Mary and Joseph's journey to Bethlehem. It represents peace and is sometimes known as the "Peace Candle."
As the second week of Advent emphasises peace, this candle reminds Christians of the Prince of Peace who is coming.
3. Third Week (Joy):
The third candle is usually pink and is called the "Shepherd's Candle" or the "Candle of Joy." It represents the joy that the shepherds experienced upon receiving the good news of Jesus' birth.
This candle is lit on Gaudete Sunday, which is the third Sunday of Advent, and is a Sunday of rejoicing.
4. Fourth Week (Love):
The fourth candle is purple and often called the "Angel's Candle" or the "Love Candle." It represents the love of God.
This candle symbolises the love that God demonstrated by sending His Son into the world.
The lighting of Advent candles serves as a way to reflect on the themes of hope, peace, joy, and love while anticipating the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ at Christmas.