The First Sunday of Advent

Isaiah 9.6Today marks the first Sunday of Advent. Advent is a time of expectation and preparation for the Christmas holiday. During the weeks of Advent many Christians participate in readings, songs, worship, devotionals, and traditions that prepare them for the arrival of the Christ Child on Christmas Eve. Advent is not something that is normally associated with LDS Christmas worship, but in many countries around the world, LDS families, along with members of other Christian faiths, celebrate the four weeks before Christmas in preparation for the holiday.

After many years, I have finally decided to start this tradition in our family as a way to turn us toward the Savior instead of the holiday rush and the more secular aspects of Christmas. Starting today and over the next weeks, I am going to share our Advent devotionals here, and hope that you will join us in preparing for Christmas.

Traditionally, on the first Sunday of Advent the readings and devotionals focus on the Old Testament prophesies of Christ. This video from the Church focuses on the prophesies of Isaiah. Happy Advent and Merry Christmas!

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About Joyce Anderson

Her family and friends call her the Queen of the United States...and Mom -- Joyce Anderson has been involved in LDS apologetics for over 20 years and with the Millennial Star since 2010. Since the beginning of the Covid19 pandemic she has added homeschooler to her list things she does in addition to being the butcher, baker & candlestick maker. When not schooling the children, she reads, paints, declutters, teaches primary, and is happy to share a bowl of chips & salsa with anyone who stops by.

11 thoughts on “The First Sunday of Advent

  1. Hi Joyce,

    I think the link to the video is broken – feel free to delete this comment once the video link is fixed.

  2. Meg — it comes up for me in Firefox, but not in IE. Not sure how to fix that, unless we call Bill Gates. 😉

  3. We’ve had fun doing a lenten celebration leading up to Christmas and Easter in the past. A fun bit of history is that Saint Margaret of Scotland used to celebrate lent before both of these holidays, spending her days fasting while succoring ~300 orphans, feeding them on her lap by hand. She would only eat after the sun was down, and sleep for a few scant hours before waking again for the next day’s ministrations. Somehow she managed to give birth to eight healthy children during these years, which her biographer and confessor claimed was a major miracle, given how much she deprived herself during these periods of time.

    Another fun tidbit is that it’s theoretically possible to complete the entire series of Personal Progress value experiences during the 46 days of lent (the 40 days don’t include Sundays, which is why you actually get 46 days). It’s a pretty intense program of activities, given that you have to be working on several value experiences simultaneously on many of the days. But inasmuch as many of these are things one ought to be doing anyway (keeping a journal, praying, reflecting on Christ’s atonement), it should still be possible.

  4. That’s interesting Meg. The Orthodox Church celebrates a type of “Christmas Lent” in lieu of Advent. Of course each nation’s church is a bit different, but in Bulgaria, you abstain from all eggs, dairy, and meat with the culmination on Christmas Eve. That night’s meal is a vegan meal, with 12 dishes, that each represent part of the Christmas story. Then, you leave the dishes on the table overnight, because you are supposed to “hasten to the church” for the midnight mass and you wait for the arrival of the Christchild at midnight. It’s actually really fun.

  5. How fun! I remember attending midnight mass when a missionary in Florence, Italy. The Duomo is always amazing to visit, but to be there on Christmas Eve at midnight was particularly awe-inspiring.

  6. Meg, I think I came up with the reason you could not see the video. It requires a flash player to work. If I am not mistaken, you can’t do flash on an iPad. I could be wrong about that, but maybe that’s the ticket.

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