What is the Story behind Advent? RSS
Advent is a period of preparation to receive the Messiah through prayer, penance, almsgiving, and hope. Advent comes from the Latin Adventus, which means "coming"; We ready our hearts to receive Jesus, The Light of The World. For four consecutive Sundays, we remember the first coming of Our Saviour and announce His second coming.
According to the Catholic Apostolate Center, the advent tradition dates back to the 4th Century. The Church in France used the period before Epiphany as a time of preparation for Baptism. It was initially called "St. Martin's Lent" for the 40 days that started on November 11, the feast of St. Martin of Tours. This is why Advent feels like Lent, but it is not.
It wasn't until Pope Gregory I in the 7th Century composed many prayers, antiphons, and psalm responses. The Roman Advent Season is the closest to what the Church celebrates today.