Sunday, November 29, 2015

Advent 2015

First Sunday of Advent

Today is the 1st Sunday of Advent, which marks not only the beginning of the Liturgical Year in the Catholic faith (and in many other Christian denominations) but also the beginning of preparations for Christmas.

My Celtic Advent Wreath

My Advent wreath is not the traditional kind, made of intertwined evergreen branches. When I went shopping at Gloria Deo in Omaha for Advent candles my first year living in Atlantic, 
I spotted the Celtic wreath pictured at right, and I have used it every Advent ever since.

Like many Catholics, I place a white candle in its own holder in the center of the wreath, to be lit on Christmas morning.

The candle we light on the 1st Sunday is called the Prophet's Candle, a reminder that the coming of Jesus has been prophesied.

Pigskin Saturday

It was a tough Saturday. My best friend Skip is a Penn State grad and is still a fanatic for his alma mater, so it was painful to watch the Nittany Lions get scalded by No. 5 Michigan State yesterday in East Lansing. Still, PSU will play in a bowl game this year, which is more than can be said for almost all of the teams I root for. The Black Knights of Army were idle this weekend, and won't play again until their annual meeting with Navy on December 12 in Philadelphia.

Notre Dame lost to Stanford on a last-second field goal, and Iowa State got stomped on the road at West Virginia. On the other hand, I'm still savoring Iowa's defeat of Nebraska from Friday, and it was fun seeing winless Kansas get blown up again, this time by Kansas State.

Notre Dame's loss means that there won't be any teams I care about in the playoff leading to the National Championship, so I've really got nothing to look forward to now until next season...

"Stop complaining. The college team I root for never gets to play in a bowl game."

That's because they don't play football, dumbass...we've been over this...

Po-TAY-toe, Po-TAH-toe

From the delightful comic strip FoxTrot, by Bill Amend, which you should read every Sunday, as I do.

Until Next Time...

With Advent comes the shift in liturgical music to hymns associated with this particular time of year. At this morning's Mass, for instance, we sang "O Come, O Come Emmanuel," whose message is an expression of the spirit of preparation at the heart of Advent.

Today's send-off is a rendition of the song by Enya, whose latest album is this week's Music Recommendation. This particular selection is found on her previous album, 


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