Sometimes it seems there are more wonderful Advent and Christmas resources than stars in the sky so the list below is pared down to just a few favorites. Links to these free resources are yours for the clicking.
You might also consider using this list to compile a great Advent Packet for the congregation.
What does the Season Mean? (Advent at Home 2020 pdf)
There are Advent calendars for all households
- Walk the Way of Love through Advent based on Presiding Bishop Michael Curry’s message (pdf)
- Faithful Families Advent Calendar by Traci Smith (this pdf print version is free to you from the Diocese of West Missouri)
- Advent Praying in Color pages are based on Sybil MacBeth’s work quietly moves us into conversation with God under the pretense of “doodling” and can help us feel more connected to each other. (trees pdf, stained glass pdf)
The Advent Wheel by Candle Press can be in addition to a traditional Advent wreath or a new alternative.
Quick search these online resources
- #Advent Word is a global, online Advent calendar. Each day from the first Sunday of Advent through Christmas Day, #AdventWord offers meditations and images to inspire and connect individuals and a worldwide community of believers to the themes of Advent.
- Walk and Listen: Forward Day by Day podcast or d365
- Download a Living Well Through Advent pdf from Living Compass
- Observe the 26 days of Advent 2020 with Advent A to Z from Loyola Press; a special e-mail series to explore seasonal themes following the alphabet for inspiration.
Music enhances the feelings of Preparation and Expectation. Give yourself the gift of music by creating an Advent playlist – online or an “old-fashioned” way – and share it with others. More than simply calming noise, music stays with us and a natural fit to include in at-home faith practices. buildingfaith.com compiled the five seasonal playlists below to get started. In addition to traditional favorites, these curated albums are available on the free music streaming app Spotify which you can access via computer or smart phone.
- Episcopal priest Kyle Oliver has two playlists on Spotify, each is a mix of contemplative and popular music.
- Josh Hosler, priest, former radio host, and avid listener, creates an Advent playlist every year, as well as other playlists for church seasons. His lists tend to be more contemporary and less contemplative.
- Here’s a lovely, calming playlist from Tsh Oxenreider, founder of the podcast Simple.
- Salt of the Sound’s music, including Waiting for the Dawn, is created to encourage spiritual reflection, both in church and in times of personal quiet.
Quietly go about incorporating these simple “random act of kindness” into each day.
- Donate nonperishable food to a food pantry.
- Leave a kind note on a neighbor’s car.
- Clean up after yourself and someone else, without being asked or expecting thanks.
- Give someone a “safe and socially-distanced” (possibly unexpected?) air or virtual hug.
And don’t forget to relax and watch movies that deliver a great message like The Man Who Invented Christmas, A Christmas Carol, Trains, Planes and Automobiles and of course this old favorite, It’s A Wonderful Life.