Q:

What do the Advent candles represent?

A:

Quick Answer

The four candles on an Advent wreath represent the 4,000 years between Adam and Eve and the birth of Christ during which mankind waited for the arrival of Jesus. A candle on the wreath is lit each Sunday during the season of Advent to signify the entrance of Christ, the light, into the world.

Know More
What do the Advent candles represent?
Credit: Stefan Jansson Moment Getty Images

Full Answer

There are three purple candles and one rose-colored candle on an Advent wreath. The purple candles are lit over the course of the first two and fourth Sundays of Advent. These candles represent prayer, penance and preparation for the coming of the Lord that each person is expected to undertake during the Advent season. The rose candle is lit on the third Sunday, Gaudete Sunday, and it represents joy. Gaudete Sunday is seen as a day of rejoicing because it marks the midpoint of Advent.

A white candle can also be placed in the middle of the Advent wreath. When used, this candle is often called the Christ candle. It is only lit on Christmas and represents the birth and purity of the Christ child. The candles are lit progressively throughout Advent to show the hope and expectation of the first coming of Christ and the anticipation of the second coming where Jesus is to judge the living and dead.

Learn more about Christmas

Related Questions

  • Q:

    Do scented or unscented candles burn longer?

    A:

    Unscented and scented candles both burn for an equal amount of time. As long as the scented candle is made properly, the only difference between how the candles burn is the fragrance released.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Who invented the horse saddle?

    A:

    No one knows who exactly invented the first saddles, but they were used more than 4,000 years ago. The saddles were simple and usually made from pieces of cloth or animal hides, serving as a buffer between the rider and the horse.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How long have cats been domesticated?

    A:

    Cats have been a domesticated human companion since the reign of the Ancient Egyptians more than 4,000 years ago, according to National Geographic. While these ancient people may or may not have been the first to domesticate the cat, they were the first to show widespread evidence of human interactions with cats thanks to the wide variety of art and artifacts indicating this culture's reverence for the cat, including mummified cats that were prepared for the afterlife in much the same way as humans, as well as the presence of snacks in the form of mummified mice. However, because the archeological record is not necessarily reliable due to the physical similarity of domestic and wild cat skeletons, it is difficult to know exactly when cats were domesticated, with some estimates ranging as far back as 12,000 years ago.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How old is China?

    A:

    Recorded Chinese history dates as far back as 4,000 years. It is considered one of the great ancient civilizations of the world and the only one that still thrives.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore