At the beginning of the calendar year, we make resolutions and plans for the entire year. Why don’t we do the same before Advent and do some planning for the liturgical year? After all, for people of faith, the liturgical year and rhythm that revolves around the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus, should be more important for us than the secular year.
Tom and I will hold our quarterly retreat soon to set our schedules for the coming year and we suggest you do too. Even if you don’t follow the liturgical calendar, now is the time to plan your scripture readings, prayer rhythm and retreat times for the coming year. Get together with your spouse, your family, or a group of friends and do some planning.
Here are some resources to help. I have tried to put together a list from a wide variety of denominational perspectives:
The Voice is a great source for the daily scriptures of the liturgical year. Tom and I print out the schedule at the beginning of the liturgical year so that we are ready for the entire year. We find that the combination of Old Testament, New Testament, Psalm and Gospel readings are all specially crafted to share a single focus and is a wonderful way to integrate the Old and New Testament stories.
They also has one of the most comprehensive explanations of Advent and the symbols we use during the season.
Resources to help you choose:
- Sacred Space – Daily Prayer with the Irish Jesuits
- Pray as You Go – also from the Jesuits. Daily prayer for portable MP3 players or available as an app for smart phones. This is a great resource for those on the go.
- biblegateway.com – provides a variety of reading plans that can be downloaded as an app.
- The Bible App – is another free app with reading plans for different seasons of the liturgical year as well as those themed around a topic selected by the user.
- The Daily Office from the Mission of St Clare and based on the Book of Common Prayer.
- Daily readings from the Presbyterian Mission Agency USA
- BibleStudyTools.com provides several plans for reading through the whole or parts of the Bible in a twelve month span.
- Reflections from Forward Day by Day
- Northumbria Community provides resources for praying the daily office through morning, midday, evening and compline services.
- Or, if you really want to be challenged this Advent, try this Social Justice Advent Guide for Families from the North Carolina Council of Churches.
- And Rachel Held Evans has a post on 28 Ideas for Advent that is definitely worth a look.
This is part of a series on Christmas/Advent resources.
- Advent Activities for Families and Kids for 2020
- Helping Kids Give Back This Christmas
- Celebrate With Simplicity This Christmas
- Advent/Christmas Music from a Rich Array of Traditions
- Getting Ready for Advent/Christmas Worship Resources for the Season
- Choosing Your Scripture Readings for the Coming Year
- Who Will You Invite to the Manger?
- Advent Candle Light Liturgy
- What On Earth Are The O Antiphons
Resources from Godspace for Advent and Christmas
Godspace has a variety of resources available for celebrating this season.
- NEW DEVOTIONAL! Lean Towards the Light this Advent & Christmas + Advent Cards Bundle compiled by Christine Sine and Lisa DeRosa
- Lean Towards the Light Advent Retreat Online – video sessions by Christine Sine along with handouts to prepare for the coming of the Christ Child this Advent.
- A Journey Toward Home: Soul Travel For Advent to Lent compiled by Kristin Carroccino and Christine Sine
- Waiting for the Light: An Advent Devotional compiled by Ricci Kilmer, Susan Wade and Christine Sine
- Prayer Cards – more than Christmas gifts. These have been used for daily devotions, grief counselling, small groups and congregational prayers.
Check out the entire resource list here for more ideas for Advent and Christmas.
Godspace has a number of Advent resources available for both free download and purchase. Visit our store.