Catholic Feast Days and Traditions During Advent

Many questions tend to come up this time of year – especially when it comes to Catholic celebrations. What is Advent about? Why do Catholics have a special devotion to the Blessed Mother? Why do some equate St. Nicholas with Santa Claus? Read on for tips on how to introduce your children to some of the fundamental beliefs associated with the Christmas and Advent season!

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Advent Traditions

Advent is the season of preparation prior to Christmas. It includes the four Sundays before Christmas and the month of December. The word “advent” translates as “coming,” which refers to the coming of Jesus Christ. Given that it’s such an important time for the church, traditions abound during this time of year! Here’s one blog that details a few Advent customs – from having a Jesse tree to celebrating Christkindl (or “Secret Santa”).

Image of Advent wreath with one candle lit
Advent wreath with the first Sunday’s candle lit (Photo: Waldemar Brandt/Unsplash)

Mary, Mother of God

This link is a great resource for how to introduce kids to the feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It includes tips such as listening to music about Mary or eating something white in her honor. The Immaculate Conception is a holy day of obligation Catholics celebrate every year on December 8th. On this day, we honor the belief that Mary was created without ever having had original sin.

Photo of nativity set
(Photo: Walter Chávez/Unsplash)

St. Nicholas

St. Nicholas is a bishop who lived in the 3rd and 4th centuries in what is now modern-day Turkey. His feast day is December 6th. Christians remember him as a gift-giver and protector of children. As a result of his popularity, traditions from all over the world are still practiced to this day. Check out this website for lots of historical tidbits about St. Nicholas, including how he is related to Santa Claus! And for younger kids, you can find a coloring page here.

Photo of small child talking to Santa
(Photo: Mike Arney/Unsplash)

For other links on Christian traditions at this time of year, check out previous posts published on this site:

Epiphany Around the World

Christmas in Different Lands

Less is More – A Minimalistic Christmas

And early Happy Holidays from all of us at Multicultural Kid Blogs!

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I am a mother who currently has 2 young children, ages 4 and 2. I grew up in a household where we spoke only English and my first exposure to foreign language was to Spanish in seventh grade. Spanish was my worst subject in High School, but I got a bit of practice in it outside of school as my family lived in a town in Queens NY with a large Hispanic population. I didn't want to lose the little I had already learned so obtained a minor in Spanish at the City College of NY (CUNY) and from then on, tried to continue my exposure on the side whenever I could. In the meantime, I started exploring other languages by taking a semester of Mandarin Chinese, the most common language spoken in the world, and night classes in Italian, as I myself am of Italian and Irish ancestry. My hope is to expose young ones to the beauty of the Spanish language through the joy of reading. Please feel free to join me on my Facebook group Kids Spanish Book Club or my blog at!

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