It seems to me that Advent has become a non-season. It has lost the sense of reflection and prayerful hope for a messiah to come into the world. Modern society just sees it as the Christmas season, a time for festivity and celebration culminating in Christmas Day. And then? It’s all over, take the decorations down, stop singing carols, and prepare to celebrate New Year. What has happened to the twelve days of Christmas?
Traditionally the four Sundays of Advent thought about the Four Last Things: Death, Judgement, Hell, and Heaven. Dark subjects on the whole. But how can you appreciate light unless you know what darkness is? How can you celebrate the arrival of the Light of the World without thinking of the darkness of the world?
Advent is the season to reflect on these things – not an extended Christmas celebration.
– Rev Chris Luckraft, partner priest in the Beaminster Team