What is Advent?
The Church divides the year into different seasons that emphasize the life of Christ and the life of the Church. Beginning on Sunday November 27th, 2016, we will enter the season of the Church year called Advent. Advent is the season of preparation and anticipation leading up to Christmas, on December 25th, 2016 and continuing to Epiphany January 6th, 2017.
The focus of Advent is two-fold. On the one hand, we prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who came into the world as both God and man so that our sins might be forgiven. On the other hand, we anticipate the day when Jesus will return to Earth and bring an end to this world. Those will be scary days, but we can look forward to the end of the world with hope because through faith in Jesus, the end of this world will mean the beginning of a new life with Christ for eternity.
Advent, then, is a time for us to repent and believe. Knowing that Jesus was born to forgive our sins, we repent (admit our failures to God) and believe that we are forgiven because of the death and resurrection of Jesus on our behalf. Also, knowing that Jesus is coming back, we repent and believe that when He returns, He will give us eternal life.