1. First, do you come from a tradition in which the Advent season is embraced? This is not true for all of us. If you do, what is your personal preference? Do you love it or hate it? Embrace it or want it to go away already? How enthusiastically does your church enter into Advent?
We Presbyterians love our Advent-- NOW--, and I come from a tradition (Roman Catholic) that embraces it also. But I think Advent is still relatively new in our denomination, so there are still folks who would like to hear Christmas carols in church pretty quickly after Thanksgiving. But I want us to linger in the season-- it's theological! Our longing for Christmas reminds us of our longing for Christ, and that's a good thing!
2. What is your favorite Advent music? Link to a favorite piece if you can.
I adore THE most traditional Advent hymn, "O Come O Come Emmanuel," which is based on a medieval prayer, which is itself based on ancient names for Christ. Here is my currently favorite version.
3. What Advent music makes your skin crawl-- or at least annoys you and makes you wish it were Christmas already?
None, really. Okay, that "light the Advent candle, one" song used to bug me until my children learned it, and then I got all gooey inside.
4. Any Advent discoveries or re-discoveries? Again, we love links-- share your music with us!
I spent yesterday cooking to the sounds of "The Miserable Offenders" (!!!), an all-too-short-lived duo. They have an album still available on iTunes, "Keepin' the Baby Awake" which EVERYONE MUST BUY! (I am not related to the Offenders in any way.) Alas, their genius has not yet made it to Youtube. Go listen to their original song "What is the Crying at Jordan". Beautiful.
5. Tell us how your Advent is going this year. Lost in a haze of church busyness? Finding ways to sit quietly in the darkness and wait? Give us your tips for a really rich Advent experience!
I am sorry to say, I am somewhat lost in a haze of busyness, personal and churchy in nature. But I have hope and faith that it will not always be so.
Blessings of this dark, sweet season come your way!