What is Advent?

Advent is a season in the Church calendar dedicated to the hopeful anticipation for the arrival or "advent" of Jesus of Nazareth. During the four-week period leading up to Christmas, many Advent observers engage in prayer, meditation, and Scripture study that emphasizes hope, peace, love, and joy. Christians from many backgrounds celebrate this time, and while their practices may look different, all focus on the hope-filled arrival of Jesus, the long-awaited Messiah and King.

People focus on four topics—hopepeacelove, and joy—one for each week leading up to Christmas. People may light Advent candles or prepare Advent wreaths, hold special church services or read specific Scriptures each day, and some use an Advent calendar to build anticipation for Christmas.

Week One: Hope

Week Two: Peace

Week Three: Love

Week Four: Joy