Advent- Preparing for Christmas


Advent is the season that marks the beginning of the Christian church year. It starts on Sunday nearest to St. Andrew’s Day (November 30th), and it continues until Christmas Eve (December 24th). The term comes from the Latin word “adventus”, which means coming or arrival. The season is thus one of preparation for the celebration of the feast of the Nativity of Jesus Christ on Christmas Day.

The beginning of Advent is when the preparations for Christmas really begin – the festive menu is planned, gifts are chosen and wrapped, carols sung, cards are written and posted and houses decorated. In Ireland this usually happens around the 8th of December. The Advent Wreath is the widely recognized symbol of Advent. The wreath is made of a circle of evergreen laid flat to symbolize eternal life. Four candles (traditionally purple) stand in the circle and each one represents one of the four Sundays of Advent. In the centre of the circle is a fifth candle (traditionally white), the Christ Candle, which is lit on Christmas Day.


During Advent, some people make or buy Advent calendars as a way of counting the days to Christmas. Usually these calendars have twenty-four ‘windows’. Traditional calendar windows open up to show a picture of something linked with this time of year. One may show an angel or one of the shepherds who visited baby Jesus. The last window to be opened usually shows Jesus himself lying in a manger. Popular Advent calendars today usually have chocolate hidden behind each window.

Aoife Neville

6th class



  1. 1
    springtimes Says:

    Hi Friends,

    we have these calendar in Italy, too and in some of our classes we usually hang one so everyday a kid opens and window and eats a chocolate 🙂

    kids from Scuola Vivaldi

  2. 2
    springtimes Says:

    Sorry for the mistakes but it’s late…I’m sleepy
    I hope you can understand what I meant: each day a kid opens a window of the calendar in our classes and finds a chocolate 🙂

    Bye Piera

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