This Sunday is Mother’s Day, and the ad campaign is ramping up:
*buy beautiful cards
*express loving sentiments
*acknowledge all she has done for you
*take her out to dinner
But for some, Mother’s Day is a reminder of how our moms don’t fit the idyllic picture of:
What cards and gifts are out there to give to mothers who are:
*physically and/or psychologically abusive, or even
This is not a Hallmark moment holiday for us; the best we send is never good enough or is looked upon with suspicion. Any time we spend with our mothers on this day will only result in them – and us – being left tense and bitter, doing more harm than good.
My Mother’s Day will be spent with my husband, son, and his family, including our four grandchildren. They will serve me a grilled lobster tail with baked potato and the fixings, and I will be thankful for this time spent with family and humbled that they are honoring me.
My mother, though, and many others like her, will spend tomorrow alone, because their behaviors have driven their families away.
I wish it could be different.
So how did Advent become associated with beginning around St. Andrew’s Day?
As always, the road to researching this led to other unexpected information about Advent. There are some sources indicating that Advent actually started with a 40 day fast before Christmas on November 11th – St. Martin’s Day – in the fifth century. During the sixth century the fasting portion of the program was eliminated, and Advent then began around St. Andrew’s Day, November 30th, which is the date traditionally associated with Andrew’s martyrdom. Why St. Andrew’s Day for starting Advent? Andrew is considered to be the first apostle; he was originally a disciple of John the Baptist, who then introduced him to Jesus.
Tomorrow we will look at the colors associated with Advent. Read John 1:35 – 42 to see how Andrew became a follower of Christ.
AD’VENT, n. (L. adventus, from advenio, of ad and venio, to come. See Find).
A coming; appropriately the coming of our Savior, and in the calendar, it includes four sabbaths before Christmas, beginning on St. Andrew’s Day, or on the sabbath next before or after it. It is intended as a season of devotion, with reference to the coming of Christ in the flesh, and his second coming to judge the world.
Noah Webster’s First Edition of An American Dictionary of the English Language 1828.
The season of Advent is upon us – a time for preparation and reflection. Through these days leading up to Christmas and through Epiphany, I will be blogging about the different traditions of Advent – hopefully this will make the season more meaningful for you!
Let’s look first at the tradition of the Advent wreath. Initially it is thought that the wreath and its candles was used by pre-Christian Germanic tribes to ask the gods to bring back the sun after the bleak, dark days of early winter. Some have suggested that the four candles represented the four seasons. Christians then adapted the wreath and its candles to represent the different aspects of spiritual preparation for the coming of the Lord.
On the first Sunday in Advent the first candle, or prophecy candle, is lit to honor the prophets who foretold the coming birth of the Messiah. Isaiah 9:1 – 6 is one of the most quoted passages foretelling the birth of Christ.
Tomorrow we will look at why Advent is scheduled around St. Andrew’s Day. In the meantime, read Isaiah 9:1 – 6 and prepare for His coming!