Advent means “coming” or “arrival.” During the season of Advent, we celebrate Christ coming into the world and watch with expectant hope for Him to come again. In its historical origins, the season of Advent was patterned after the season of Lent, a six-week period of penitence and preparation for Easter. Similarly, the four weeks of Advent present an opportunity for communal discernment and personal examination as the church prepares to celebrate the Nativity of the Lord and looks with hope for Christ’s return.
At First Church, we begin each Sunday of Advent with the lighting of the Advent wreath. Following worship on the first Sunday, the sanctuary is decorated with greens for the holiday season. The fourth Sunday of Advent is marked with a special children’s pageant telling the story of Jesus’ birth. An intimate, candlelight evening service in the sanctuary marks Christmas Eve.