Sunday, December 2, 2012

1st Advent Sunday

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I went to church today, for the 1st Advent Sunday.
This is probably the most popular church service of the year, in Sweden. Even many who don’t go to church regularly (I don’t myself now) like to go for 1st Advent, if nothing else because of all the beautiful traditional hymns and music associated with this time of year. But I also think a lot of people (like myself) actually like to stop and remind ourselves of the “true meaning” of Christmas (even if we may not all define that exactly the same way). That in the midst of all the commercial busy-ness, we should be looking for a genuine spirit of giving and sharing.

The church today was almost full. (The photo above was taken about 10 minutes before the service began, I did not want to take photos during the actual service.) The 1st Advent service in this particular church also includes the Holy Communion. It’s been some time since I last took part of that in such a large crowd as today. To me, the communion carries a very powerful symbolism. (Some would call it more than symbolism; my point here is not to discuss that.) It is a reminder of every person being equal, at that moment – sharing something that goes beyond ourselves.

 

PS. For my Advent Calendar of Buddy Bears, please visit my other blog, DawnTreader’s Picture Book.

8 comments:

  1. Your church is beautiful and I too love the Advent season, communion, and worshiping with other believers. I go to church almost every Sunday for the joy it brings.

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  2. I am sure my tears would have welled up if I went, I can only imagine the music and the pageantry, SO special. I am so glad you went!!!

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  3. so beautiful, inside and out and I am enjoying the music, the music transcends all language barriers. incredible.

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  4. What a beautiful church and what a beautiful post. All the best to you at this special time of the year, Carol

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  5. It's interesting what draws us to Church. Your's is so beautiful and the music overwhelming. I was raised in the church, and decided as a teenager to make it my life's mission. Went to Bible College, met my husband, and have been his help partner in ministry 50 years before we retired and moved to Southern CA to be close to kids and grandkids. Being a Pastor's wife had brought me so much joy and satisfaction in my life.

    Thank you for sharing a beautiful post and lovely tradition.

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  6. Over here, the most popular time for people to go to church is Christmas Eve. I have not been to a traditional service in a long time, but I've attended modern services twice over the past 3 or 4 months and found them interesting, to say the least. Still, I do like the traditional feel about the "old way".

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  7. I have always had a great love of churches and the way they have developed in the various countries of the world that I have visited. Your church certainly appears to lend itself to a glorious and 'high' worship. Regardless of my personal beliefs I do dislike the commercialisation of Christmas.

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  8. Thanks to all for your comments. For those of you who don't already know, it was not in my family traditions when I grew up to go to church at all (not even at Christmas) but from my late teens and many years onwards I myself was active in a few different free churches. In later years, going to church more sparsely, I feel more drawn towards the traditional 'high' church kind of services. (Some of the reasons are more practical than theological; but I guess emotions play their part as well.)

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Communication is what makes blogging fun :)

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