Scotty Smith’s series of Advent prayers

December 9, 2014

Pastor Scotty Smith, founding pastor of Christ Community Church in Franklin, Tennessee, who blogs at Heavenward on the Gospel Coalition site has been posting wonderful daily Advent prayers this year. I find they are deeply practical prayers, challenging me to examine my heart and helping me think about how to apply the Advent Scriptures to my daily life.  I commend them to our readers!

Here are all the entries since Advent began:

Dec 9:  An Advent Prayer: When Things Seem Impossible

Dec 8:  An Advent Prayer: God’s Generosity and Our Stubbornness

Dec 7: A Prayer for the 2nd Sunday of Advent: The Day of No More Harm

Dec 6:  An Advent Prayer: Abiding in God’s Full and Permanent Favor

Dec 5: An Advent Prayer: Bringing Our Fears to Jesus

Dec 4: An Advent Prayer for Waiting and Repenting of Impatience

Dec 3:  An Advent Prayer: In the Presence of Jesus There Is Joy

Dec 2: A Prayer for Filling Our Hearts with Jesus–the Lord of Advent

Dec 1:  A Prayer for Orienting Our Hearts During Advent

Nov 30:  A Prayer for the First Sunday of Advent


An Advent Prayer – We bear the need of a savior on our hearts…

December 4, 2014

From today’s Advent devotional entry at the Trinity School for Ministry website

reflecting on this verse: “And people shall enter the caves of the rocks and the holes of the ground, from before the terror of the Lord, and from the splendor of his majesty, when he rises to terrify the earth” (Isa 2:19)

Lord we bear the need of a savior on our hearts this day. Help us to see this need not only in these days of Advent but also in the days to follow. Equip us to preach a message of liberation to the captives and hope for all who find themselves hiding in caves. Your Word is light and Your Gospel breaks into the deepest of all human sinfulness. Savior of the nations, come and dwell with us in promise and hope this Advent. Amen.

The Rev. Kris Leland Snyder (DMin Student)
Pastor, Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church, Ackley, IA

More Good Advent 2014 Resources for Children and Families

December 2, 2014

From the Diocese of Bath & Wells in the UK– A number of good resources for Advent.  I particularly like the “A is for Advent” poem and the Advent Alphabet ideas

They also have a very good Jesse Tree page – each day of Advent there is a new symbol and accompanying short devotional (including a Scripture verse and prayer) that is posted.


From our 2006 archives: Advent wreath prayers and activities for children

November 23, 2014

Reposted from our 2006 archives.  I believe all the links below work, though I may be able to provide better / updated versions of these links, and will try to do so soon.

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We see a lot of search queries in our site meter with folks looking for Advent Wreath prayers or Advent crafts and activities for young children.

While we’ve linked some children and family-oriented resources in our Resource Compilation, not many of them were as helpful as I’d hoped. So I went on a search for a few more resources — especially those that would easily print out on one or two pages.

Here are the some of the best resources I’ve found today:

Crafts and Activites

1) Children’s Advent Crafts and Activities (for pre-school children)
I found this link on the MOPS website. It provides a Bible reading, a craft, and suggested activities for each week of Advent. Very appropriate for Sunday School classes (ages 3-6).

2) CatholicMom.Com’s list of Advent Activities for Children — this spans a much wider age range of children. Loads of Activities Here.

Children’s Advent Prayers for lighting the wreath, etc.:

The Passionist Community has a very nice set of prayers for young children during Advent. Here’s a prayer they offer for using in lighting the Advent Wreath candle each day:

O God,
as light comes from this candle,
may the blessing of Jesus Christ come to us,
warming our hearts and
brightening our way.
May Christ our Savior bring life
into the darkness of this world,
and to us, as we wait for his coming.

Here is their list of 4 prayers for each week of Advent.


Advent Favorites: A Responsive Advent Wreath Prayer and an Advent Kyrie

November 23, 2014

Note – 23 Nov 2014:  Please note the embedded links may not yet work.  I need to update them all, but I’m traveling with little internet access for the coming week, and I wanted to at least get this online as a resource since Advent begins next Sunday.

From Our 2006 Archives

A Responsive Advent Wreath Prayer and an Advent Kyrie

This responsive intercessory prayer could be used any week of Advent during a family Advent Wreath lighting.

A Responsive Advent Wreath Prayer:

Leader: Christ came to bring us salvation and has promised to come again. Let us pray that we may be always ready to welcome him.

Reader: Our response is “Come, Lord Jesus.”

Reader: That the keeping of Advent may open our hearts to God’s love, we pray to the Lord.
Come, Lord Jesus.

Reader: That the light of Christ may penetrate the darkness of sin, we pray to the Lord.
Come, Lord Jesus.

Reader: That this wreath may constantly remind us to prepare for the coming of Christ, we pray to the Lord.
Come, Lord Jesus.

Reader: That the Christmas season may fill us with peace and joy as we strive to follow the example of Jesus, we pray to the Lord.
Come, Lord Jesus.

Leader: As we wait for the coming of Jesus, let us pray in the words He gave us:

All: Our Father …

Source: http://www.stlouisparish.org/html/adventtraditions.htm#advent6

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I also just came across a somewhat similar Advent Kyrie for weeks 1 and 2 of Advent from ELCA pastor Thomas L. Weitzel: It’s based on O Come O Come Emmanuel (and the Advent Antiphons)

Advent Kyrie (weeks 1 & 2)

A. O Lord, have mercy and come to us.
C. Come, Lord Jesus.

A. O Wisdom, proceeding from the mouth of the Most High, pervading and permeating all creation:
C. Come and teach us the way of prudence.

A. O Adonai and Ruler of the house of Israel, who appeared to Moses in the burning bush and gave him the Law on Sinai:
C. Come with an outstretched arm and redeem us.

A. O Root of Jesse, standing as a sign before the peoples, before whom all kings are mute, to whom the nations will do homage:
C. Come quickly to deliver us.

A. O Emmanuel, our King and our Lawgiver, the anointed of the nations and their Savior:
C. Come and save us, O Lord our God.

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Advent Kyrie (weeks 3 & 4)

A. O Lord, have mercy and come to us.
C. Come, Lord Jesus.

A. O Key of David and scepter of the house of Israel, you open and no one can close, you close and no one can open:
C. Come and rescue the prisoners who are in darkness and the shadow of death.

A. O Dayspring, splendor of light everlasting:
C. Come and enlighten those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death.

A. O King of the nations, the ruler they long for, the cornerstone uniting all people:
C. Come and save us all, whom you formed out of clay.

A. O Emmanuel, our King and our Lawgiver, the anointed of the nations and their Savior:
C. Come and save us, O Lord our God.


From our 2006 Archives: Advent Wreath Blessing and Lighting Prayers

November 23, 2014

from our archives, originally posted in 2006 .

Note – 23 Nov 2014:  Please note the embedded links may not yet work.  I need to update them all, but I’m traveling with little internet access for the coming week, and I wanted to at least get this online as a resource since Advent begins next Sunday.

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Advent Wreath Blessing and Lighting Prayers

The following are some general prayers. I will be posting specific prayers for each week of Advent every Sunday.
Update: the Advent Week 1 candle lighting prayers are here.

Two prayers for Blessing the Advent Wreath

Blessing for the Advent Wreath (by laypeople):

O God, by whose word all things are sanctified,
pour forth thy blessing upon this wreath
and grant that we who use it may prepare our hearts
for the Coming of Christ,
and may receive from thee abundant graces.
Through Christ Our Lord. Amen.

Blessing of the Advent Wreath (by priests)

Priest: Blessed are you, O Lord our God, king of the universe.
You sent your Son to be the Light of the world
and to spread his light of love to all.
Bless us and accept + these wreaths of light made from our hands.
May their ever increasing brightness be a sign to us
of the approaching nearness of your Son,
that we might prepare in joy for his humble birth in a manger
and be ready to receive him at his coming again in glory;
through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Layperson: Amen

(From Celebrating Advent and Christmas: A Sourcebook for Families.)
© 2001 by Women for Faith and Family, http://wf-f.org

(I found it at: churchyear.net)

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Various General prayers I’ve found for Advent Wreath candle lighting
(I will be posting specific prayers for each week of Advent separately, beginning tomorrow)

Lord, our God, we praise you for your Son, Jesus Christ: He is Emmanuel, the hope of all people, he is the wisdom that teaches and guides us, he is the Savior of every nation. Lord God, let your blessing come upon us as we light the candles of this Advent wreath. May the wreath and its light be a sign of Christ’s promise to bring us salvation.

We ask this through Christ, our Lord. Amen.

–source: CatholicMom.com (I posted this prayer last year as a devotional with artwork and a meditation included.)

O God,
as light comes from this candle,
may the blessing of Jesus Christ come to us,
warming our hearts and
brightening our way.
May Christ our Savior bring life
into the darkness of this world,
and to us, as we wait for his coming.

Source: http://www.cptryon.org/prayer/child/adv.html

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Here are some of the best resources I’ve found with background about Advent wreaths and their symbolism, as well as prayers for lighting the wreath

ChurchYear.Net is MUST reading

They offer a breakdown of what each candle has often been considered to symbolize:

Certain candles have been given various names. Some systems name the candle thusly:
1. Hope (purple)
2. Peace (purple)
3. Joy (rose; the corresponding Sunday is “Gaudete Sunday”)
4. Love (purple)
5. Christ (white)

Alternately others define it like this:
1. Patriarchs
2. Prophets
3. John the Baptist
4. Mary the mother of Jesus.
5. Christ the light of the world

And they have excellent prayers for each week of Advent, with accompanying Scripture verses. I’ll be posting those weekly prayers, along with others each Sunday.


Advent 2014 – An Index of all our Posts

November 17, 2014

Here is a listing of all our Advent 2014 blog entries.  Entries are organized in chronological order (most recent first) in each category.  There is some duplication among categories.

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KEY POSTS:

Advent 2014 at Lent & Beyond (a brief “menu” of links to navigate among all our various Advent subcategories)

Best of Advent at Lent & Beyond – An Index of our Advent Favorites from the past 10 years

Links to Favorite Advent Devotional Sites for 2014

Advent 2014 – An Index of all our Posts

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Advent Devotionals:

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Advent Family & Children:

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Advent Music:

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Advent Poems:

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Advent Prayers:

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Advent Quotes:

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Advent Resources:

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If you’d like to browse. through our Advent posts… you can find all our Advent 2014 entries here.

Here’s our Advent 2013 INDEX , or use this link to browse all Advent 2013 entries

Here’s our popular post from 2013 with Anglican Advent Resources. (We’ll be updating that soon for 2014)


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