Christmas Traditions at Southern Heights
We have many traditions and patterns of life together as a community. These traditions and patterns are most noticeable during the Advent to Christmas season. Though by no means and exhaustive list, you will find below a brief description of some of our traditions.
The Advent Wreath has a long and storied history within the life of the Christian Church. Simply, we use the Advent Wreath to mark the weeks leading up to Christmas, a kind of spiritual countdown, with a candle lit for each of the four Sundays preceding Christmas Day.
On each of these Sundays, a purple candle is light (see "Liturgical Colors" below), symbolizing the gradual dawning of the Light of the World into the world. On Christmas Eve, we light the center white candle as the Christ Candle to indicate that Christ has come.
We recognize that, often, the Holiday Season of Christmas is particularly difficult for those who have lost loved ones. We miss their presence around the table of fellowship, and we mourn their absence.
As a part of our decoration for Christmas, we have a tree that is dedicated to the memory of all whom we have loved and lost.
Individuals and families have donated (and continue to donate) angels of all shapes and sizes and forms in honor of their loved ones to hang on the tree as a reminder that, though they are gone from this world, they are not gone from our lives.
After the four Sundays of preparation that is Advent, we celebrate the birth of Christ on Christmas Eve with a candlelight service. During this service, we celebrate the sacrament of communion together through intinction (where you dip a piece of bread into the cup and partake both elements together).
This year, this service will be held at 7pm on Christmas Eve, and will take the form of "Lessons and Carols", where we retell the nativity story through scripture and song.