In the Orthodox Church the Nativity Fast, known in the West as Advent, begins on November 15. Modeled after Great Lent, this is a 40-day fast in preparation for Christmas, the feast of our Lord’s birth. But there is another theme to this season as well. We not only prepare to celebrate the feast of Christ’s first coming into the word. We also use this time to reflect on our readiness to meet him at his second coming.

Daily Prayer

You, O God, have given us your word for a light to shine upon our path. Grant us to meditate on that word, and to follow its teaching, that we may find in it the Light that shines more and more until that perfect day, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Morning Prayer

In the wondrous blending of sounds, it is your call we hear. In the harmony of many voices, in the sublime beauty of music, in the glory of the works of great composers. All true beauty has the power to draw the soul towards you, O God, and make it sing in ecstasy: Alleluia!

Evening Prayer

You brought me into life as if into an enchanted paradise. We have seen the sky like a chalice of deepest blue, and listened to the soothing murmur of the forest and melodious music of the streams. It is a pleasure to be your guest. Glory to You, O God, from age to age!