Each year since 2006, I have posted a daily Advent Calendar on my blog:
in 2006, a treasury of poems, images, thoughts for the day;
in 2007, mostly a series of my poems;
in 2008, exploring the theme of waiting, visually inspired by a three week study trip to Israel, including the disputed/occupied Palestinian territory of the West Bank;
in 2009, meditations on the theme of repentance;
in 2010, creative but practical ways we might go about Making Room to welcome Jesus in our homes – if you are a ‘concrete’ ideas person, rather than an ‘abstract’ ideas person, I recommend that particular series;
in 2011, a series of more philosophical reflections on hope and longing and waiting.
Each year has been quite different in style and feel, but always including some of my photos. You can revisit any, now archived by year, via the navigation column to the right.
This year, my starting point will be Luke 2:19, ‘But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.’
Advent begins four Sundays before Christmas Day: because Christmas Day is a fixed date, and so the day of the week it falls on moves each year, Advent is not a fixed length but can begin anywhere between 27 November (as it did last year) and 3 December. This year, Advent begins on 2 December.
It is a season of expectation and preparation, looking back to Jesus’ coming-into the world and looking forward to his return.