Advent means “coming,” and during the season, Christians prepare for Jesus’ coming. The four Sundays preceding Christmas, which is when Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, are recognized for four virtues. The candles on the Advent wreath symbolize hope, love, joy and peace.
- The Prophets’ Candle, symbolizing hope; the Bethlehem Candle, symbolizing faith; the Shepherds’ Candle, symbolizing joy; the Angel’s Candle, symbolizing peace.
First Sunday of Advent Readings: Hope
Isaiah 9:2, 6-7:
“The people walking in darkness
have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness
a light has dawned. […]
For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the greatness of his government and peace
there will be no end.
He will reign on David’s throne
and over his kingdom,
establishing and upholding it
with justice and righteousness
from that time on and forever.
The zeal of the Lord Almighty
will accomplish this.”