First Sunday of Advent Date in the current year: November 27, 2016

First Sunday of Advent Advent begins on the Sunday nearest to November 30, that is the feast day of St Andrew the Apostle. It covers four weeks and finishes on Christmas. The first Sunday of Advent is not a nationwide holiday in many countries, however, the western Christianity has its own traditions for this day.

The first Sunday of Advent marks the beginning of the preparations for Christmas. Originally Advent began on November 11, that is St Martin's Day and it was a six-week fasting before Christmas, corresponding to Lent before Easter. However, later the fasting was omitted and the season was shortened to four weeks. Advent spread across Europe and after World War II its traditions were brought by the soldiers to the USA.

Churches are busy on the first Sunday of Advent, because special readings are to be held. The readings relate to the Old Testament patriarchs who were Christ's ancestors. People often go to church to listen to the readings. As for secular life, the Christmas wreathes are often hanged on the doors, children are given special Advent calendars and all members of the family begin making handmade presents for Christmas. Some people also light the first candle of the Advent wreath. This practice is common for the Lutherans, but it also spread to many other Christian denominations.

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