It appears Advent is moving along at quite a pace: this upcoming Sunday is the beginning of the third week of Advent. The Third Sunday of Advent is also called “Gaudete Sunday” or “Rejoice Sunday”. Gaudete in Latin means “Rejoice in the Lord Always”.
So, what is special about Gaudete Sunday? The theme of the day expresses the joyful anticipation as Christmas draws ever nearer. The third candle of the Advent wreath is rose-colored, and the priest can wear rose-colored vestments.
Strictly speaking, the color is rose, not pink. “Pink” has the connotation of a weaker red color, whereas the color rose provides the proper sense of penitential attitude and joyful anticipation. This liturgical color is representative of a white and violet mixture, a mixture of the joyful celebration of heaven with the penitential nature of the season.
This third candle of Advent symbolizes Joy, which we will re-imagine in our Message Series this Sunday. As we continue to approach Christmas Day, let our joyful anticipation grow more and more. This candle takes us back to the joyful anticipation of the shepherds who journeyed to see Jesus in Bethlehem, even before the wise men.
So, this candle and this Sunday are meant to remind us of the joy that the world experienced and can continue to experience at the birth of Jesus. Let us celebrate as we light the rose-colored candle this weekend.
God bless you during this beautiful Advent season,