Monday, November 10, 2008


Last year, the Our Lady of Guadalupe Chapel inside Punta Fuego Village just borrowed the Advent Wreath it used during the Simbang Gabi. And this year, we decided to have our own..

Let me give you an idea what an Advent Wreath is:

An 'advent wreath' is a ring of evergreen cuttings surrounding or integrating four candles, used for a non-liturgical devotion by some Christians during the season of Advent-the period of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus. During Advent, in preparation for the coming of Jesus at Christmas, nine days of Masses are held to usher in the event of Christ’s birth. These Masses were celebrated in the early morning hours, typically at about 4:00 AM when the roosters crow to announce the coming of a new day.

The wreath is made of various evergreens, signifying continuous life. The laurel signifies victory over persecution and suffering, pine for immortality, or cedar for strength and healing. Pine is the most commonly used. The prickly leaves remind us of the crown of thorns. The circle of the wreath, which has no beginning or end, symbolizes the eternity of God, the immortality of the soul, and the everlasting life found in Christ. Originally, pine cones, nuts, or seedpods were used to decorate the wreath which symbolizes life and resurrection. All together, the wreath of evergreens depicts the immortality of our soul and the new, everlasting life promised to us through Christ, the eternal Word of the Father, who entered our world becoming true man and who was victorious over sin and death through His own passion, death, and resurrection.

The Advent Wreath contains four candles— three purple and one rose. Starting during the first week of Advent, a candle is lit while prayers are said. An additional candle is lit during each of the following weeks until all four candles are lit during the last week before Christmas. Advent wreaths are used in both private, family services and at church services. Often a fifth candle (white) is added to the center of the wreath for lighting on Christmas Eve, in celebration of the birth of Jesus.

Daily Prayers for Lighting the Advent Wreath

First Week

O Emmanuel, Jesus Christ,
desire of every nation,
Savior of all peoples,

Second Week

O King of all nations, Jesus Christ,
only joy of every heart,
come and save your people.

Third Week

O Key of David, Jesus Christ,
the gates of heaven open at your command,
come and show us the way to salvation.

Fourth Week

O Wisdom, holy Word of God, Jesus Christ,
all things are in your hands,
come and show us the way to salvation.

Since Advent is a time to stir-up our faith in the Lord, the wreath and its prayers provide us a way to augment this special preparation for Christmas. Moreover, this good tradition helps us to remain vigilant in our homes and not lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas.

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