For many of the families in our parishes, the countdown to Christmas has already begun. We’ve been looking at Christmas decorations around town and in stores since the weekend before Halloween! THE WEEKEND BEFORE HALLOWEEN!
I think the biggest consequence to this is that by the time Christmas is within site, we’re already tired of it. We’ve moved on before the Savior has even been born.
So, what can we do about this? We can help our parishioners remember the joy of the season, prepare their hearts for Christmas, and embrace Advent again.
We can provide great opportunities for families, encourage them along their journey to embrace this liturgical season, and invite them into something deeper.
So what can families do? Here are some ideas I’ve loved from around the inter-webs:
- Embracing Advent with small children in 3 easy steps from Catholic All Year
- Host a Nativity Play (even encourage your families to do this at home)
- Plan an Advent Wreath Making Event (ideas here)
- Provide time for prayer with an Advent Holy Hour, once or a few times during the season. One of the parishes I’m working with is having a Holy Hour each Tuesday and Friday evening with quiet time, a reflection, confession, and time for preparation.
- Partner with a local organization to host an Angel Tree collection.
There are so many opportunities during Advent to slow down, embrace the joy and anticipation of the season, and celebrate the Birth of the Savior on December 25th.
What is your parish doing to celebrate Advent?