This is the "Advent" page of the "Seasonal Resources: The Church Year" guide.
Alternate Page for Screenreader Users
Skip to Page Navigation
Skip to Page Content
Candler School of Theology Pitts Theology Library St. Jerome
Browse an FAQ Topic:

Seasonal Resources: The Church Year   Tags: christmas, church_year, easter, halloween, liturgical_year, seasonal, thanksgiving, worship  

Guides to Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, Halloween, and other special occasions in the Church Year.
Last Updated: Feb 19, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

Advent Print Page

About Advent

In the Western Church, Advent begins the Sunday closest to St. Andrew's Day (Nov. 30) and lasts for the 4 Sundays immediately preceding Christmas.  In the Eastern Church, Advent begins in the middle of November.  Advent marks the beginning of the liturgical year.  Although Advent is no longer formally a fasting period, as is Lent, it continues to mark a quiet period of preparation, both for Christmas and for the Second Coming of Christ.

Digital Advent Calendar


Books on Simplifying Christmas Observances

Cover Art
Christmas Is Not Your Birthday - Michael Slaughter
ISBN: 1426727356
Publication Date: 2011-08-01
Reflections from a United Methodist pastor on focusing on the missional meaning of Christmas rather than the consumer observance.

Cover Art
Hundred Dollar Holiday: The Case for a More Joyful Christmas - Bill McKibben
Call Number: Check your local public library
ISBN: 068485595X
Publication Date: 1998-12-02
From environmental activist and United Methodist Bill McKibben: a call for scaling back the consumer aspect of the holiday season to focus on relationships and experiences.

Cover Art
Unplug the Christmas Machine: A Complete Guide to Putting Love and Joy Back into the Season - Jo Robinson; Jean C. Staeheli
Call Number: Check your local public library, purchase a copy, or request via Interlibrary Loan
ISBN: 0688109616
Publication Date: 1991-10-28
A guide to thinking through both practical and spiritual elements of planning a simpler Christmas season and enjoying it more.


Advent Resources for Church Work

TextWeek Advent Resources Page
Includes liturgies, worship planning, "Blue Christmas"/longest night, hanging of the greens, artwork, devotionals, and reflections

Images for Advent Scripture Passages - Digital Image Archive
This link goes to images associated with the Revised Common Lectionary, Year A. Additional links exist for the readings in Years B and C.

The Advent Conspiracy
Includes graphics, bulletin board resources, and videos for focusing on a four-week Advent series, with one of the following themes each week: 1)Worship fully; 2)Spend less; 3)Give more; 4)Love all. Also includes a children's curriculum. The Advent Conspiracy was started by 5 pastors in 2006.

Cover Art
Come Thou Long-Expected Jesus: Advent and Christmas with Charles Wesley - Paul Wesley Chilcote
Call Number: THEO STACKS: BV40 .C465 2007
ISBN: 9780819222503
Publication Date: 2007-09-01
Provides meditations, songs, and reflections centered around the hymns and poems written by Anglican priest and co-founder of Methodism, Charles Wesley. Readings are suitable for corporate or individual use.

Cover Art
Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany: Liturgies and Prayers for Public Worship - Brian A. Wren
Call Number: THEO STACKS: BV40 .W74 2008
ISBN: 9780664233099
Publication Date: 2008-10-17
Includes liturgies and prayers for use by congregations using the Revised Common Lectionary as well as those that are not. Also includes some tips for using these resources in public worship.

Cover Art
An Advent Sourcebook - Thomas O'Gorman (Editor)
Call Number: THEO STACKS: BX2170 .A4 A38 1988
ISBN: 0930467825
Publication Date: 1988-09-01
Includes a selection of prayers, scripture passages, and reflections suitable for Advent observances. Selections are divided by week.

Cover Art
Something Is about to Happen: Sermons for Advent & Christmas - Thomas G. Long
Call Number: THEO STACKS: BV40 .L66 1996
ISBN: 0788008668
Publication Date: 1996-08-01
This slim, 60-page volume presents 7 sermons based on texts from the Advent and Christmas seasons. These sermons are intended as models helpful for ministers preparing for their own sermons.

Proclamation Series A, B, C
Call Number: THEO STACKS: BS534.5 .P765
This series contains sermon notes for each season of the Revised Common Lectionary, including 1 slim volume for the Advent/Christmas season each year.

Series A is written by Mark Allan Powell (1992), Series B is written by William H. Willimon (1993), and Series C is written by Christopher R. Seitz (1988)


Advent Resources for Family Use

Cover Art
We Light the Candles: Devotions Related to Family Use of the Advent Wreath - Catharine Brandt
ISBN: 0806615443
Publication Date: 2004-01-01
Available via Interlibrary Loan or as a Kindle download. Appropriate for use with young children.

Cover Art
The Family Book of Advent - Carol Garborg
Call Number: Check your local public library or purchase a digital version
ISBN: 1609365410
Publication Date: 2012-10-01
25 hands-on devotionals and activities for observing Advent with children.


Advent Resources for Personal Use

Cover Art
Christmastide - Phyllis Tickle
Call Number: THEO STACKS: BV40 .D68 2003
ISBN: 0385510268
Publication Date: 2003-10-21
Provides prayers for personal use for morning, midday, and evening offices for the period from Advent through Epiphany. This volume is an excerpt from The Divine Hours volume covering prayers for autumn and wintertime.

Cover Art
Christmas with the Holy Fathers - Peter Celano (Editor)
Call Number: THEO STACKS: BV45 .C587 2008
ISBN: 9781557256034
Publication Date: 2008-11-01
A selection of writings from Catholic Popes regarding the religious year from Advent to Epiphany. Passages are short (1-2 paragraphs or pages) and suitable for brief readings or meditations.


The Nativity of Jesus

See also our Preaching Research Guide, which includes lectionary and other seasonal preaching resources.

Cover Art
The Birth of the Messiah - Raymond Edward Brown
Call Number: BS2575.2 .B76 1993
Standard commentary on the infancy narratives of Matthew and Luke. Comprehensive; a goldmine of information.

Cover Art
The First Christmas: What the Gospels Really Teach About Jesus's Birth - Marcus J. Borg and John Dominic Crossan
Call Number: BT315.3 .B673 2007
Popular authors' readable account of infancy narratives in Matthew and Luke and their influence on the modern world.

Cover Art
The Nativity: History & Legend - Géza Vermès
Call Number: BT315.3 .V47 2006
Distinguished Jewish New Testament scholar examines the traditions about Jesus' birth.


Suggested Search Terms

Some search times that will bring results for Advent and Christmas study are:


Advent -- Prayers and Devotions

Advent -- Meditations

Advent sermons

Advent Music

Advent Hymns


Church year

Fast and feasts

Christmas (may subdivide geographically; e.g., "Christmas Ireland")

Christmas music (narrower term: "Carols")


Denominational Church Resources

Journals with Advent Issues

  • Call to Worship
    The first issue of each year contains lectionary aids for the coming year. Each week includes a selection of hymns keyed to particular hymnals as well as prayers, blessings, anthems for various choirs, and suggestions for handbell and organ music. Location: Periodicals room
  • Journal for Preachers
    The "Advent" issue (first issue of each volume) contains a selection of sermons based on the scripture passages for the year and general themes of the season. Location: Periodicals room
  • Reformed Worship
    The September issue contains articles, liturgies, prayer station ideas, and candle readings for the season of Advent.
    Location: Periodicals room

Submit Your Christmas Links

Got a favorite Christmas site, or want to recommend a book or article? Feel free to submit it here.

© Emory University Libraries - 540 Asbury Circle, Atlanta, Georgia 30322

Loading  Loading...