The wreaths have been used as Christmas decorations and represent an unending circle of life and growth. The wreaths made of evergreens in pine branches or holly decorate the doors, mantle, and windows of Christian homes. The wreath in holly branches has thorns, which represent the thorns on Jesus' Crown when he was crucified.
Today, beautiful artificial wreaths are also in vogue
The origin of the Wreaths can be traced to the Pre Christian Germanic People who gathered evergreen lighted wreaths in the dark freezing months of December to welcome the coming spring and renewed light.
The Christians embraced this tradition and by the 16th century both Catholics and Protestants were using these symbols to celebrate the advent of Jesus. Advent is a time to pray, confess and purge oneself to welcome Jesus with a pure heart. Traditionally, the wreath consisted of four candles. The three candles were in violet (purple) and the fourth one was rose (pink). It is said that sometimes four white candles or four violet candles were used in the wreath. These four candles represent 4 weeks of preparation.
On the fourth Sunday before Christmas or the first Sunday of the Advent the first violet candle symbolizing hope is lit and a short prayer is offered to Jesus who is about to take the mortal form. It is followed by lighting a purple candle that stands for love on the Second Sunday, pink candle, which represents joy on the third Sunday and finally the symbol of peace the purple candle on the fourth Sunday of Advent.
We as Americans leave evergreen wreath's on the graves of fallen soldiers to show our everlasting respect for the lives they bravely gave for our countries safety.
Christmas wreaths have been around for hundreds of years and have been used for various purposes around the globe, but here in New England, the traditional evergreen wreath is a holiday mainstay.
And whether adorning a door or a window, area residents seem to be simplifying their wreaths more and more. Twenty or 30 years ago, people used to have their wreaths decorated with pine cones and silver and gold balls.
The trend right now is just to have a plain wreath; there aren’t as many heavily decorated out there these days. About the only exception to the scaled-back rule is the front-door wreath for many folks.
On the front door, they’ll have something a little more special because that’s the entrance to their home. They might have plain ones on their windows, but they want the front door punched up a little more.
From all the members of the Carey Family we wish you all Peace, Love, a Very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and A Happy, Healthy New Year!