According to About.com, Mary Fairchild, Christianity Editor says, “Celebrating Advent involves spending time in spiritual preparation for the coming of Jesus Christ at Christmas. In Western Christianity, the season of Advent begins on the fourth Sunday prior to Christmas Day, or the Sunday which falls closest to November 30, and lasts through Christmas Eve, or December 24.”
A variety of Advent customs have developed over the centuries, therefore my overview here is not all-inclusive. Even if my church doesn’t formally observe Advent, my immediate family can celebrate Advent as a way to keep Christ at the center of our Christmas celebrations.
Our neighbors placed a white candle in the middle of a natural evergreen tree bough. Surrounding the white candle were four candles. Each of the four candles represented either, hope, peace, love, or joy. The hope, peace, and joy candles were purple while the love candle was pink.
Each of the four Sundays before Christmas, one of the outside candles is lit. Then on Christmas Day, the middle candle will be lit. Bible verses are read specific to each topic.