Candles are used in various forms in Western traditions as a method of counting down to the Christian celebration of Christmas. At www.thecandleselection.co.uk there are two types of Advent Candles available to help you with your countdown to Christmas.
The first types of Advent Candles offered are a range of classic column candles, printed with numerals representing the days of December. These candles are lit daily and the number corresponding with the date in December is burnt away.
These Advent Candles provide the perfect visual method of counting down to Christmas; when the final numeral has been burnt away Christmas has arrived!
The second type of Advent Candles are generally found on Advent Wreaths, typically four or five basic coloured candles, the colour of the candles used depending on the religious tradition celebrated. Traditionally the Advent Wreath consisted of three purple candles, one pink candle and one white candle; purple Advent Candles being the colour of penitence and royalty and is still used in some religious traditions including the Roman Catholic Church.
The purple Advent Candles are each lit, one on the first, second and fourth Sundays of Advent. Whilst the third Sunday of Advent would see the pink (or rose coloured) Advent Candle lit to focus on the forthcoming season of celebration; in some Church traditions the order of the third and forth candles are exchanged with the pink Advent Candle being lit on the forth Sunday of Advent.
Finally, the white Advent Candle is lit on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day or, as tradition dictates, it may be lit on the Sunday immediately before Christmas.
More recently, Advent has undergone a change to become a season of hope and anticipation and blue is now associated with Advent. Royal blue Advent Candles being sometimes used to symbolise royalty, or bright blue Advent Candles are used to symbolise a new beginning. Red and Green are the more secular colours of Christmas, derived from older European practices of using evergreens and holly to symbolise ongoing life.