An expectant mother prepares for the arrival of her baby. A spouse prepares for his/her wife/husband who is returning from a trek. A student prepares for impending exams. Every important event is characterized by some form of preparation. The coming of Christ is a very important event in the life of Christians, consequently, the Church sets aside the period of Advent to aid us in our preparation.
The word “Advent” comes from a Latin word which means “coming”. It is a joyful period of expectancy and feverish preparation for the coming of Jesus Christ. An Advent wreath symbolically expresses this reality. Lighting a distinct candle on each of the four Sundays of Advent symbolizes the coming of Christ, who is the Light of the World.
We prepare to commemorate and celebrate the birth of Christ (Christmas) – His first coming. We are also called upon to prepare for His second coming, i.e. when Christ will come again to judge the living and the dead.
The prophecy of Jeremiah (cf. Jer. 33:14-16) is fulfilled in the person of Jesus Christ who comes with power (cf. Lk. 21:25-28). Inherent in our readings within the four weeks is a clarion call to holiness. Three key ingredients in this call are:
The main liturgical color for the season – *violet* – says it all. We have been ushered into a mood of repentance, intense prayer and preparation. On the third Sunday of Advent, the color Rose will elicit from us a mood of rejoicing because “Our salvation is close at hand”.
During this season, heaven knocks at the door of every heart. May our response be: Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus!