Will the parish Christmas decorations show good liturgical sense? Here are some guidelines for planning the worship environment for the Christmas season.
The arts during Christmas may symbolize the Incarnation and thus speaks in a profound way to the meaning of “God with us.” Adapt the suggestions below to local customs.
Since the Scripture readings for Advent are filled with so many images, Advent banners are helpful in portraying their message in a colorful and powerful symbolic way. Always begin preparations for Advent by considering the Scripture lessons that will be read. The following description is one example of a visual image that is based on an appropriate Scripture reading.
The seasons and feasts of the church year offer numerous possibilities for congregational movement and choreographed dance. Significant dimensions of these celebrations are best experienced through such action.
Following the lead of secular culture, many Christians place Christmas as the most important day in the Christian year. This article suggests that a more profound understanding of Christmas arises out of an awareness of the history of the Christian year. Christmas should be understood in light of the events which follow—Epiphany and, eventually, Easter.
Advent worship involves both penitence and joy, moods that can be conveyed by the visual environment of the worship space. Adapt the following suggestions to local custom.
Advent is a penitential season, calling us to both personal and corporate repentance. Acts of confession and lament are appropriate not only for personal wrongdoing but also for the evil principalities and powers that pervade our culture.
The history of Advent teaches us a great deal about its meaning and prepares us to observe this time with reverence and understanding. This history reveals the simultaneous importance of both penitence and hope, of both remorse and rejoicing.
Colors of the various seasons of the Christian year express the mood or feeling of the season. The following outline presents the colors most often associated with Christian seasons.
Worship leaders and planners from many traditions have been working toward a consensus or ecumenical approach to the Christian year, resulting in the following outline of the year-long calendar.