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Symbols of the Season
November 25, 2023, 12:00 AM

This season of Advent is full of symbols- just about everything that decorates our church and our homes, for that matter, has meaning.

The color for the season of Advent is purple. You will see purple draped on our chancel, pulpit, lectern. We will have purple candles as special “Advent candles” we light each Sunday. I will wear a purple stole. Purple is a color of royalty. Purple can be a difficult color and is a less common color in nature. When only natural elements were available for dying fabrics and as such, only the very wealthy (royalty) had purple. Using purple in the season of Advent is a reminder of Jesus as King.

You see a lot of greenery during the season- evergreen trees, holly, mistletoe, pine, fir, and such. These plants (if live plants) remain green all year. Ancients saw them as signs of things that would last forever, much like God’s love.

Much like the greens, wreaths are a symbol of God’s unending love. Like the circle of the wreath, there beginning or ending to God’s love. It is also a symbol that God’s love encircles the whole world.

Another prominent Advent decoration is the Poinsettia. It was first introduced to the US in 1828. The flower looks like a flaming star, reminding us of the star of Bethlehem. In Mexico the flower is knowns as the “flower of the Holy Night.” There is a lot of legend around the flower that adds to the beauty of this symbol.

As we decorate and enjoy decorations just about everywhere we look this season, let us remember the reason for the season and look to the birth of Christ to come again into our world.