Advent at Guadalupe

November 15, 2006

Advent is almost here (the 1st Sunday is December 3). This means a few things at Guadalupe:

  • The Christmas tree will be put up in the chancel. It has blinking colored lights, which I do not care for. In addition to this, someone (I know who) will put a big stuffed Santa Claus on the table against the wall in the back of the chancel right below the banner that has the cross on it. I maintain hope that the gospel message of Christmas is great enough that I don’t need to register my dislike of the stuffed Santa Claus. Besides, I don’t face the chancel–I face the door in the narthex–so I don’t have to look at the blessed thing.
  • People will bring poinsettias and line the steps up to the chancel with the red and white plants. Poinsettias can grow year-round in Arizona if you plant them outside after Christmas, though they may wilt and die in the summer (as may I).
  • We will sing Christmas carols even though I know these should be sung after Christmas.
  • Tamales!!!
  • Our most beautiful altar table cloths will come out of the closet. They’re deep blue with a silver star sewed onto the front.
  • Year C in the lectionary will begin. Year C is my favorite year since Luke is my favorite gospel.
  • Other decorations include a card table with a nativity set up on it. If our house were bigger, I would start a nativity collection and set them up every Christmas.
  • I will feel once again that I actually have a vocation for ministry.

I do need some help from anyone who happens to read this. The “Advent wreath” that Guadalupe has is some kind of wrought-iron thing that was never meant to be used as an advent wreath. How do I know this? Because it only has three candle holders surrounding the central candle. As you may know, Advent has four Sundays, each allotted its own candle. This is how a complete Advent wreath should look:

advent wreath

If you want to imagine our wreath, think of something a lot more dangerous looking, minus one of the outer candles. For the last two Christmases, I’ve handled this the same way I handle the stuffed Santa Claus, namely, I’ve ignored it. But this Advent I’d like to improve. You know, baby steps. What do you think I should do? Should we try to get an expensive new advent wreath? Should I keep ignoring it? Or, do you have another more creative solution?

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4 Responses to “Advent at Guadalupe”

  1. Alex Says:

    Uh, why don’t you order that exact advent wreath that is pictured on your blog??

  2. Songbird Says:

    I don’t suppose you could go for an evergreen wreath? That’s how I got past something rickety looking in my church. Who can argue with evergreen? Then all you need is a florist’s foam (or whatever it is) shape or ring in the middle with candle-holders you stick inside the wreath and don’t see. Voila! No need for the wrought-iron thing-a-ma-bob.

  3. sheepdays Says:

    Thanks, Songbird. Your suggestion is clearly the simplest answer to the problem. Now if I can only convince my congregation!

  4. the vicar of hogsmeade Says:

    Sometimes forgiveness is easier to seek than permission. I say follow Songbird’s advice. Get the evergreen and prepare the apologies.


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