The season of Advent will begin Sunday. It is fascinating to me to know the origin of so many traditions that we have today... to know where they come from, why they are important, and to know what they stand for. 

Remember that we won't use all of the symbols for the Christmas season yet... because it is Advent. I hope you notice that the Creche is missing something.

In fact, this piece of the Nativity will be missing until Christmas Eve. Placed between Mary and Joseph is an empty manger. Advent is a season of waiting, of expectation, of hope. Just as a child awaits Christmas morning to see what Santa has brought, so we too await Christ coming at Christmas. We must wait. But we wait with anticipation and hope. 

The wonderful part of our waiting for Christmas Eve is that we know what we will receive! Emmanuel! May you be anxious for Christmas Eve and the gift that we will receive, the coming of Christ. 

Grace and Peace Dakota