Skip to content
Deacon Keith Fournier Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you. Help Now >

The Advent Calendar

Free World Class Education
FREE Catholic Classes

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
10/25/2018 (3 months ago)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)

A History Behind The Advent Calendar

An Advent calendar has become a tradition for many families when celebrating Advent and the Christmas season. Young children are full of anticipation each time they get to reveal their special treat behind the paper wall each day leading up to Christmas. But do you know where the Advent calendar came from? Or why we lead up to Christmas with the Advent calendar? 

Advent calendars originated in the 19th century.

Advent calendars originated in the 19th century.

Highlights

We know Advent has been celebrated since the start of the fourth century. According to Mental Floss, this period was originally "a time for converts to Christianity to prepare for baptism but is now more commonly associated with the anticipation of the anniversary of Christ's birth on December 25."

Advent Calendars don't typically follow the particular period of Advent, as far as days go. Instead, they begin on December 1 and end on December 24. 

According to Aletia, "the reason why the Advent calendars start on December 1 and not when the liturgical season begins is because of the wide variation in dates when Advent begins."

According to Richard Sellmer Verlag, the origin of Advent calendars can be traced back to the 19th century. The very first styles of "calendars" came from the German Protestant areas. The story goes, every religious family would make a chalk line on their doors for each day in December until Christmas Eve. 

The first Advent calendar object came to existence in 1851. 

One of the very first Advent calendar creators was a German man named Gerhard Lang. As a child, Gerhard's mother would make him an Advent Calendar with 24 little candies stuck on a cardboard. Later in life, Gerhard took this idea a step further and printed little pictures that could be situated on a cardboard for each day in December. This became the first printed Advent Calendar, although, it was simply known as a "Christmas-Calendar" at that time. 

Richard Sellmer Verlong says, "At the beginning of the 20th Lang produced the first Advent calendars with little doors to open."

Around this time, a separate printing company called, Sankt Johannis Printing Company began printing Advent calendars with Bible verses instead of pictures behind the doors. 

The popularity of the Advent calendar really started to spread. Unfortunately, Lang was forced to close up his printing shop around the start of WWII. Cardboard had to be rationed and the production of calendars with pictures was forbidden. 

The first printed calendar after the war came from Richard Sellmer in 1946 - this was "The Little Town" Advent calendar. 

The Advent calendars full of chocolates were made available in 1958. 

President Dwight D. Eisenhower is commonly credited for bringing the popularity of Advent calendars into the United States. During his presidency, he was photographed with his grandchildren opening up an Advent calendar, and the photo ran in many national newspapers. 

Since the popularity of the calendars has grown so large, modern culture has taken their own spin on the traditional Advent calendars. There are "kid-friendly" versions with popular characters, like Legos and cartoons. There are "high-class" versions that are very expensive. The Advent calendar has largely become a commercial necessity. 

With all the commercial profit and mainstream calendar creations, it can be said that Advent calendars might miss the true meaning of Christmas. However, no matter the calendar, it is an excellent way to help build up joy and excitement leading up to the wonderful day of Christ's birth. 

---


'Help Give every Student and Teacher FREE resources for a world-class Moral Catholic Education'


Copyright 2019 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for January 2019
Young People and the Example of Mary.
That young people, especially in Latin America, follow the example of Mary and respond to the call of the Lord to communicate the joy of the Gospel to the world.


Comments



More Advent & Christmas

Advent? What is it all about

What is Advent? The word Advent derives from the Latin word meaning coming. The Lord is coming. We may reflect that every year at this time we celebrate his coming , so that in a sense we can lose the feeling of expectancy and joyful anticipation, because at the end of the season, everything seems to return to pretty much the same routine. If that is the case, then our preparation may have been lacking ... continue reading


FREE Classes on Lent from Catholic Online School

Our Mission is to Provide a Free World Class Catholic Education for Anyone, Anywhere. Help our Mission >


The Christmas Story

The Christmas Story To become the mother of the Savior, Mary "was enriched by God with gifts appropriate to such a role."132 The angel Gabriel at the moment of the annunciation salutes her as "full of grace". In fact, in order for Mary to be able to give the free assent of her faith to the announcement of her vocation, it was necessary that she be wholly borne by God's grace... continue reading


Deacon Keith Fournier Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you. Help Now >

Advent Daily Readings

Daily Scripture Readings for Advent The weeks of Advent remind us to set aside some of the hectic business of the holiday season, and to quietly reflect on the promise of the baby born in Bethlehem 2000 years ago. The Bible readings listed below relate to the Advent themes of waiting, preparation, light in the darkness, and the coming of the promised Messiah. continue reading


More Advent & Christmas News

50 years later, a Christmas message from the heavens

Image of Give us, O God, the vision which can see thy love in the world in spite of human failure.

Fifty years ago on Christmas Eve (Dec. 24, 1968) the crew of Apollo 8 entered lunar orbit and began circling the moon - the first time in ... continue reading


'Observe Advent': What does it really mean? Watch

Image of With the first Sunday of Advent behind us, the liturgical season of preparing for Christmas is well underway.

With the first Sunday of Advent behind us, the liturgical season of preparing for Christmas is well underway.  Denver, Colo. (CNA) - ... continue reading


New Vatican Christmas Stamps feature beautiful artwork

Image of New Vatican Christmas Stamps

The artwork featured on the Vatican's postage stamps for Christmas 2018 were painted by a man serving a life-sentence in a Milanese ... continue reading


Catholic Online Shopping Announces 40 Days of Deals!

Image of Shop now to enjoy 40 Days of Deals!

Catholic Online Shopping has announced 40 Days of Deals. Catholic gifts will be discounted, allowing shoppers to get bargains on some of ... continue reading


The Nativity Scene Watch

Image of Nativity Scenes are depicted in many different ways and styles based on cultural and Biblical influences.

The Nativity Scene is a meaningful expression for our religious faith. With it, we provide a captivating visual focus during the Christmas ... continue reading


The Advent and Christmas Season... by Catholic Online Shopping

Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Information
Learn about Catholic world

Catholic Online
Inform - Inspire - Ignite

Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained

Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need

Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online

Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye

Daily Reading
Today's bible reading

Lent / Easter
Death & resurrection of Jesus

Advent / Christmas
Birth of Jesus

Rest of Catholic Online
All Catholic world we offer

Services
Products and services we offer

Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books

Advertise on Catholic Online
Your ads on catholic.org

Catholic Online Email
Email with Catholic feel

Education
Learn the Catholic way

Catholic Online School
Free Catholic education for all

Student Classes
K-12 & Adult Education Classes

Support Free Education
Tax deductible support Free education

Socials
Connect with us online

Catholic Online on Facebook
Catholic social network

Catholic Online on Twitter
Catholic Tweets

Catholic Online on YouTube
Enjoy our videos

Catholic Online on Instagram
Shared Catholic moments

Catholic Online on Pinterest
Catholic ideas style inspiration

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.

Catholic Online is a Project of Your Catholic Voice Foundation, a Not-for-Profit Corporation. Your Catholic Voice Foundation has been granted a recognition of tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Federal Tax Identification Number: 81-0596847. Your gift is tax-deductible as allowed by law.