The word Advent means “coming.” It is a time to slow down, be quiet and meditate about the real meaning of Christmas. These four weeks before Christmas are a time to prepare our hearts and our lives as we wait for the coming of Jesus. We focus on the promise that God made to his people and how that promise was fulfilled in Jesus. Advent is also the beginning of the liturgical year. The season begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas and ends on the day before Christmas. It may be a time for new beginning for us as Christians.
In antiquity, purple dye was very expensive, so purple came to signify wealth, power and royalty. Therefore, purple is the color for the season of Advent, which celebrates the coming of the King. Many churches use blue in Advent which signifies hopeful expectation and is traditionally associated with the Virgin Mary. Somewhere along the way the third candle of the Advent wreath turned pink in honor of Mary. Originally, Advent was a solemn fast in preparation for Christmas, so the custom extended to the third Sunday in Advent was meant to liven it up a little bit.
Good Samaritan is hosting a five week study of spiritual gifts using Charles Bryant’s Rediscovering Our Spiritual Gifts.
St. Dunstans is hosting a six week adult education series. They have also adopted four families to receive food, clothes and toys, including three from their immediate neighborhood and an El Nido family.
St. Thomas, Temecula hosts a three week Advent Sunday school program for all ages.
St. Nicholas Visit
Good Samaritan: Sunday, December 3, including a ministry fair and chili lunch
Good Samaritan: Sunday, December 17
St. Thomas: Sunday, December 24, 5 p.m.
St. Hugh, Idyllwild: Sunday, December 10: We provide cookies to the local help center and package them to give with gifts to families in need.
St. Peter’s, Del Mar: Sunday, December 24: Join us for loud singing, cookies, hot cocoa and carols.
Blue Christmas Services
St. Hugh, Idyllwild: Sunday, December 8: Annual interfaith service of solace for those who have a difficult time during the holidays.
Alternative Christmas Markets
St. Peter’s, Del Mar: December 3 – 17: Shop and support organizations that care for children.
Advent Baby Shower
St. Peter’s, Del Mar: December 1 – 10: Donate new, unwrapped gifts of diapers (much needed!), clothing, books, and toys for the RefugeeNet.
St. Peter’s, Del Mar: Sunday, December 3, 5 p.m.: Evensong
St. Thomas, Temecula; Sunday, December 24, 10:30 p.m. Carols with the Chancel Choir
Shortly after the resurrection, Jesus was walking down a long road when he ran into two strangers. These strangers did not recognize Jesus. How could they? Jesus had died, been buried, and, just hours earlier, risen from the dead. The stunning story of Christ’s death had spread, and these two travelers did not yet believe […]
For five days in late May of this year, I had the privilege of gathering with other seminarians at the annual Preaching in Excellence conference hosted by the Episcopal Preaching Foundation (EPF). For 35 years, the EPF has been educating Episcopal seminarians and clergy on the benefits of great preaching. Four of my fellow Sewanee […]
One of the interesting aspects of working in a diocesan office is an awareness of the trends across congregations in various locales. Of course, each congregation is unique in many ways, but we are each part of the same tradition, in the same diocese. Because of that, trends become quickly apparent. One of those emerges […]