Using the Catholic Advent Prayers that are available help us enrich our spiritual as well as physical preparations for Christmas. So many times we get caught up in the physical, ie: decorating the house, preparing gifts for loved ones... that we forget about the spiritual preparations that help us truely be prepared for Christ's birth.
One on my family's favorites is the St Andrew Christmas Novena which begins on November 30th of each year and is said 15x's/day through Christmas Eve. We like to add this one to the end of our daily Rosary so we don't forget to say the novena each day.
The O Antiphons are next on the list of a family favorite. We like to use them as our Advent Wreath Prayers before our dinner. The children take turns each night lighting the Advent wreath, and my husband or I take turns reading the O Antiphons or, before they start on Dec. 17th, and end on the 23rd, we also use the Collect of the day, especially on the four Sundays of Advent. These O Antiphon prayers are also used if you have a Jesse Tree.
"On Dec 17th, at the Magnicficat at Vespers, begins the singing of the solemn antiphons appointed for the week preceding Christmas. Each of them is a fervent appeal for the coming of the Messias. In words taken from Scripture, they all proclaim the divine tiltes and the high perogatives of the Saviour of the world together with His important mission." From the 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal
The Advent Wreath Prayers
Taken from Scripture, one of the family reads a prayer of blessing and a passage from the Bible as another family member lights the candles. These prayers stay the same for each week of Advent, changing only on each additional Sunday.
If the Advent wreath is lit during dinner, it can be placed on the table, if during the Rosary or other family prayer times, it can be on your coffee table or another suitable place.
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