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Do you have an Advent wreath?

Discussion in 'Religions Q&A' started by Sirona, Dec 1, 2020.

  1. Sirona

    Sirona Hindu Wannabe

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    Advent wreath - Wikipedia

    Watched Mass on TV with my friend. Catholic priests bless the advent wreath at the beginning of advent. My Lutheran friend was very upset about this practice. She says that one can only bless people, not things.
     
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  2. Tony Bristow-Stagg

    Tony Bristow-Stagg Veteran Member
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    Well I think tradition may be missing the point of worship.

    It does not upset me though, or maybe it does, I have never really thought about it!

    Regards Tony
     
  3. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium Ānanda
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    I don't know about Lutherans, but people of many religious backgrounds have consecrated objects or have imbued them with blessings.

    Even when I was Catholic, I was given a scapular medal and rosary beads that were blessed.
     
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  4. exchemist

    exchemist Veteran Member

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    Well Catholic priests bless a lot of things: holy water for baptism, the Christmas crib......, even the sea (in Brittany). It may be thought a bit superstitious but it's harmless enough.

    But no I don't have an advent wreath and I'd find anyone having one in their house a bit odd. It's generally in church to mark the passage of the four Sundays of Advent.
     
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  5. Vouthon

    Vouthon In varietate concordia
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    We are not accustomed to having advent wreaths at home - typically, they are used only for the Advent liturgies in an ecclesiastical setting.

    Catholicism is a sacramental faith and the blessing of inanimate objects is one form of 'sacramental' (distinguished in order of grace from the seven sacraments).

    We have always held that the physical is the vehicle for conveying God's grace, a notion which Protestants in the Reformed tradition (Baptists, Anabaptists, low-church Anglicans) have historically rejected out of hand.

    Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy are exquisitely 'sensual' faith traditions: our church liturgies appeal to all five senses with Gregorian Chant for your ears, incense for your nose, holy water for your hands, the beauty of icons for your eyes - a physical manifestation of a hidden spiritual grace oriented towards the transcendent.

    Every part of life can be imbued with sacred significance and 'reflects' God the Creator, not just persons. This is eminently biblical:


    "Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will renounce the faith by paying attention to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the hypocrisy of liars whose consciences are seared with a hot iron. They forbid marriage and demand abstinence from foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, provided it is received with thanksgiving; for it is sanctified by God's word and by prayer" (1 Timothy 4:1-4)​


    Catechism of the Catholic Church - Sacramentals


    1670 Sacramentals do not confer the grace of the Holy Spirit in the way that the sacraments do, but by the Church's prayer, they prepare us to receive grace and dispose us to cooperate with it. "For well-disposed members of the faithful, the liturgy of the sacraments and sacramentals sanctifies almost every event of their lives with the divine grace which flows from the Paschal mystery of the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Christ. From this source all sacraments and sacramentals draw their power. There is scarcely any proper use of material things which cannot be thus directed toward the sanctification of men and the praise of God."176

    1671 Among sacramentals blessings (of persons, meals, objects, and places) come first. Every blessing praises God and prays for his gifts. In Christ, Christians are blessed by God the Father "with every spiritual blessing."177 This is why the Church imparts blessings by invoking the name of Jesus, usually while making the holy sign of the cross of Christ.

    1672 Certain blessings have a lasting importance because they consecrate persons to God, or reserve objects and places for liturgical use. Among those blessings which are intended for persons - not to be confused with sacramental ordination - are the blessing of the abbot or abbess of a monastery, the consecration of virgins and widows, the rite of religious profession and the blessing of certain ministries of the Church (readers, acolytes, catechists, etc.). The dedication or blessing of a church or an altar, the blessing of holy oils, vessels, and vestments, bells, etc., can be mentioned as examples of blessings that concern objects...

    1674 Besides sacramental liturgy and sacramentals, catechesis must take into account the forms of piety and popular devotions among the faithful. The religious sense of the Christian people has always found expression in various forms of piety surrounding the Church's sacramental life, such as the veneration of relics, visits to sanctuaries, pilgrimages, processions, the stations of the cross, religious dances, the rosary, medals,180 etc.
     
    #5 Vouthon, Dec 1, 2020
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2020
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  6. Sirona

    Sirona Hindu Wannabe

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    Thanks for your comment. In Germany, it is a tradition to have an advent wreath on the living room table, even though many people are lapsed Christians.
     
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  7. exchemist

    exchemist Veteran Member

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    Ah yes, I see on looking it up that this is a Lutheran tradition copied, by among others, the Catholics. I didn't know that. But we only have them in the church.
     
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  8. DagonVarunaMitraApolloZan

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    Blessing looks like touching. Why do priests keep doing that?! These objects are innocent and can't even speak out about being touched by priests!
     
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  9. Heyo

    Heyo Well-Known Member

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    In typical, religious, greedy manner the Catholics said "they have it, we want it too". But if you think about it, it has always been that way. Christmas was "the Romans have Saturnalia, we want them too", "the pagans have a maypole, we want one too", "the pagans have Samhain, we want that too".

    As for blessing things: as long as they aren't blessing cannons again ...
     
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  10. metis

    metis aged ecumenical anthropologist

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    No, we don't have an advent wreath, although I don't have a problem with others having them.
     
  11. pcarl

    pcarl Well-Known Member

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    Yes, we have an advent wreath which we light every night before dinner. It is not given the attention as in past years when the children were growing up. They would take turns lighting the candles and leading the prayers, reading the accompanying Gospel verse found on an advent calendar. For Catholics Advent is a time for repentance, waiting and hope. One of my favorite children stories for this time has been 'Where love is, there God is also', authored by Leo Tolstoy in 1885.

    For Catholics who would like to follow Advent with the Church,
    Blessing of an Advent Wreath | USCCB
     
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  12. metis

    metis aged ecumenical anthropologist

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    Here on the Detroit area, we had Aretha Franklin, so does that count?
     
  13. pcarl

    pcarl Well-Known Member

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    ??????
     
  14. metis

    metis aged ecumenical anthropologist

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    Pun on "Areth...".

    OK, I tried. :(
     
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  15. PearlSeeker

    PearlSeeker Active Member

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    No. The only one who could ever reach her
    was the son of a preacher man.
     
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  16. PearlSeeker

    PearlSeeker Active Member

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    Yes, we have an advent wreath at home.

    That's strange because Jesus blessed food in the Bible.
     
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