Advent Activities

This Advent, the Durham Catholic Parent Involvement Committee invites families to prepare for the coming of Jesus by trying the following activities to make your family’s journey to Christmas more meaningful. 
Book Advent Calendar 
Start a new tradition with the Book Advent Calendar. Wrap up 25 of your favourite Christian Christmas storybooks,Books wrapped in brown paper with a number for each day of Advent Bible excerpts or links to e-books at the library. Unwrap one for each day of December or the Advent Season. Consider books like God Gave Us Christmas, The Christmas Story and Christmas Stocking to get you started. Click here for more book titles. 
Lost Sock Advent Calendar 

Gather up all your socks who have lost their partner (or have holes!) and hang them on a string. Put a little treat and Advent Cards inside. Unpack a little joy and mindfulness each day!   

Socks hung up on a wall with a number for each day of Advent

Advent Wreath 
Create an Advent Wreath using items you have at home. Empty toilet or paper towel rolls painted in different shades of green, used green tissue paper, construction paper, evergreen boughs, fabric – get creative! Add candles (battery operated or made out of paper are safest) and “light” a candle each Sunday of Advent.Advent wreath made from paper
 
The Advent Wreath traditionally holds four coloured candles which are lit one by one on each of the Sundays during the Advent season. Each of the coloured candles have their own meaning. 
  • The first Sunday of Advent candle is purple and symbolizes Hope reminding us that Jesus is coming.
  • The second Sunday of Advent candle is purple and symbolizes Faith reminding us of Mary and Joseph’s journey to Bethlehem.
  • The third Sunday of Advent candle is pink and symbolizes Joy reminding us of the joy the world experienced at the coming birth of Jesus.
  • The fourth Sunday of Advent candle is purple and symbolizes Peace reminding us of the angels’ message of “Peace on Earth, Good Will Toward Men.”
Some wreaths also have a fifth white candle that represents purity and is lit on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.
 
So why do we use purple and pink during Advent? Violet is a liturgical colour that is used to show a time of prayer, penance and sacrifice. The third Sunday of Advent is called Gaudete (Rejoice) Sunday. Rose is a liturgical colour that is used to show joy which is why on this day we light a pink candle instead of another purple one.
 
Follow this link to a simple paper Advent Wreath that your family can make with some basic materials you probably already have on hand!
 
Jesse Tree 
Christmas tree with images from Bible storiesMake your own Jesse Tree a visual Advent Calendar and recount the journey to Jesus through the Bible. Create a tree and ornaments for each day using felt, construction paper, old wrapping paper, cardboard, or whatever you have! As you put each day’s ornament on the tree, read the matching Bible story and talk with your family about its significance.
For more faith-filled family Advent activities, visit the Faith & Family Collective’s ‘Advent at Home’ free download. Activities include a Manger craft, hot chocolate recipes, mindfulness activities, and thoughtful ideas to do for others.
 
Religious Resources
Visit https://www.archtoronto.org/advent for a number of religious resources to help you and your family prepare the way for the Lord.

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