Archbishop Eamon Martin launches interactive online Advent 2018 Calendar

30 Nov 2018

Archbishop Eamon Martin has launched the 2018 online Advent Calendar, which will go live on this Sunday, the first Sunday of Advent, marking the opening of the Church’s new year.

The online Advent calendar, which is unique in Ireland, will provide a special focus on family as part of ongoing reflections following the visit of Pope Francis to Ireland for the World Meeting of Families 2018.  There will be family prayers and suggestions for acts of kindness or charity that all of us are encouraged to undertake during the month of December.  The calendar offers tips on how families can care for our common home by having a more sustainable Christmas.

Now in its fifth year the popular, attractively designed and interactive online Advent Calendar provides resources to the parish, school and home and these are available behind a virtual door, each day, during the season of Advent.  As each door opens content will be revealed to assist our prayers and reflections to keep Christ at the centre of our Christmas preparations during this special liturgical season. 

Archbishop Eamon said, “The season of Advent marks the beginning of the Christian year and the time of spiritual preparation for the Lord’s coming at Christmas.  It is a time of waiting, conversion and hope.  Advent also prepares us for the second coming of Christ at the end of time.  As Christians, we must always be prepared for the coming of the Lord – ‘You must stand ready because the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do no not expect’ [Mt 24:37-44].   Such preparation does not happen at once but over time and so each day of Advent allows us to reflect on the joy of the Gospel.  Our online calendar is a helpful resource on our journey.”

“This year we can reflect on the time Pope Francis spent in Ireland during which he invited us to welcome Christ in the bits and pieces, the ordinary moments of every day life.  I particularly welcome the inclusion in the calendar of some of the inspirational messages given to us by the Holy Father during his momentous visit in August.”

Archbishop Eamon continued, “I invite everyone during this Season of Advent to enjoy our online calendar which highlights themes of love in the family as well as mercy and peace.  Thank you to all who contributed to this year’s content.”


Notes for editors

  • Archbishop Eamon Martin is Archbishop of Armagh and chair of the Council for Communications of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference.
  • A popular feature from last year’s Advent Calendar was the audio thought for the day.  Contributors this year will include bishops, priests, religious, laity, staff of the councils and agencies of the Irish Bishops’ Conference, as well as primary, secondary and university students.  The 2018 Advent Calendar will also include:
    • Mass Readings and Saint of the Day;
    • Family prayers;
    • Advent videos: blessing of the crib in the home, blessing of the advent wreath in the home;
    • The Words of Pope Francis from WMOF2018;
    • Acts of kindness in the family, school and parish
    • Suggestions to make Christmas more sustainable so as to care for our common home;
    • Advent music;
    • Seasonal prayers;
    • Multimedia thought for the day;
    • Resources for Advent including books and music;
    • Advent events in dioceses and parishes;
    • Information on Trócaire’s Global Gifts for 2018 as well special appeals to help families in need.
  • To add this year’s Advent Calendar to your website or social media pages please use the following link: ie/advent-calendar.   You can also follow updates on a special Advent Facebook page [Advent 2018] and on Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #liveAdvent.

For media contact: Catholic Communications Office Maynooth: Martin Long 00353 (0) 86 172 7678 and Brenda Drumm 00353 (0) 87 310 4444