The meaning of the 5 candles of the Advent wreath …The second candle is the “Bethlehem Candle”

The candle of the first Sunday is called the Candle of the Prophet and represents hope. It reminds us that many centuries before the birth of the Child Jesus, wise men called prophets, foretold his coming.

A prophet named Micah even predicted that Jesus would be born in Bethlehem: “And you, Bethlehem, land of Judah, you are not really the smallest capital of Judah: for out of you will come a chief who will feed my people, Israel.” (Mi 5,1)

The second Sunday candle is called the Bethlehem Candle and represents salvation. It reminds us of the small city where our Savior was born. “Even Joseph … went up to Judea to the city of David, called Bethlehem, to be registered with Mary his wife, who was pregnant. Now, while they were in that place, the days of birth were fulfilled for her. He gave birth to his firstborn son .. “(Lk 2: 4-7)

The third Sunday candle is called the Candle of the Shepherds and represents the joy of the shepherds, the first to adore the baby Jesus and to spread the good news. The shepherds said to each other: “Let us go as far as Bethlehem, let us see this event which the Lord has made known to us”.

So they went without delay and found Mary and Joseph and the child lying in the manger. And after seeing it, they reported what they had been told about the child. All those who heard were astonished at the things the shepherds said. ” (Lk 2 15-18)

The candle of the fourth Sunday is the Candle of the Angels is to honor the angels and the wonderful news that they brought to the men in that wonderful night. “The angel said to them:” Do not be afraid, for I bring you the good news of a great joy that all the people will have: ‘Today, in the city of David, a Savior was born for you, who is the Christ, the Lord ». (Lk 2: 10-12)

Finally, the fifth candle, which not everyone inserts, should be placed in the center, it is the white one that lights up on Christmas night , it represents Jesus, Light of the world: “The true light, that illuminates every man, came into the world”. (Gv.1,9)

Where to place it and when to light it

The Advent wreath as well as being placed in the church near the altar and lit during the celebration of the Holy Mass , can, indeed it is good that it is also present in our homes. It is a precious element in our families, small domestic churches.

Candles are lit one a week, on Saturday nights or Sundays, when the whole family is gathered together. During the week you can still light the candles, one for the first week, two for the second week and so on, and you do it when you pray or eat together or to better accommodate a guest.

Good lighting of the first candle then and who had not yet prepared the Crown, is in good company but we are always in time to do so.

Simona Amabene

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