Good news: Quality Advent videos do exist, but they aren’t easily found. We did the work for you and vetted these 11 videos available on YouTube that are worthy to share with your family this Advent season.
by Regina Lordan
Search Netflix. Scan On Demand. Take a look online. Santa is everywhere — as are his elves, reindeer, jingling bells and snowmen. But where are videos about Jesus’ birth? Better yet, what about videos highlighting Advent? Good news: They do exist and there are some wonderful clips explaining and celebrating this season of hopeful anticipation and preparation for Jesus. There’s a lot of muck to trudge through first, so we did the hard work for you and found these 11 YouTube clips about Advent worth sharing with your family.
Advent on the Web
Many of the videos listed below are appropriate for all age groups. But there’s always a disclaimer with YouTube: It might be best to view these videos with your children as many of the clips will include initial commercials that may not be appropriate for everyone. Also, several of the videos do not have narration and might need a fast reader for text displays.
1. “The Advent Conspiracy” by The Advent Conspiracy
Updated annually, this is the explainer video for The Advent Conspiracy, a movement advocating a different approach to Advent: worship fully, spend less, give more, love all. Grounded in the Works of Mercy, this Advent Conspiracy promo video might just spark a good discussion in your home about how you want to spend Advent.
2. “Advent: More than a Chocolate Calendar” by Ascension Presents
In this video clip, Father Mike Schmitz encourages us to make room for Jesus in our lives. Ascension Presents also offers video reflections on the Sundays in Advent. Here’s a video about the first Sunday of Advent, as narrated by Jeff Cavins.
3. “What is Advent Again?” by De La Salle Christian Brothers Midwest District
Don’t let the music induce panic. This attention-drawing video highlights the juxtaposition of Christmas craziness with the holiness of the season. Its content is perfect for younger children, but a speed reader might be needed for the assist.
4. “Advent: Waiting for Jesus” by the Diocese of Dublin
Bummer; there are no cool Irish accents in this video clip, but there is cool background music by Mumford and Sons to add some emotional appeal. Let’s just say, “I will wait, I will wait … for you …” might help your family reflect on the magnitude of this season of waiting.
5. “Advent in 2 Minutes” by Busted Halo
Busted Halo is just so good at knocking out some big Catholic stuff in only a few short minutes. Call your resident speed reader back to the screen because he or she will be able to help out with this short and sweet clip relaying Advent basics.
6. “Advent HD” by Catholic Online
This video will help older children understand the Advent within a theological and historical context.
7. “What is Advent” by Concordia Publishing House
Concordia Publishing House is the publisher of the Lutheran Church. This video is so well done, it is worth sharing for not only its spiritual merit, but production value as well.
8. “Advent Wreath Instructional” by the Diocese of Brownsville, Texas
There is a lot of crafty YouTube videos out there, but this one is created by a Catholic diocese. It gives a nice explanation of what an Advent wreath symbolizes in its shape and color.
9. “The O Antiphons” by Newman Center at the University of Washington in Seattle
Beginning with the beautiful chant, this video clip explains the special period of time from Dec. 17-23 called the “O Antiphons” of Advent. This one would be best appreciated by older children who are mature enough to not giggle at some brief umm … revealing artwork (think Michelangelo’s “David”). But all can enjoy the audio.
10. “Bishop Barron on The Advent Revolution” by Word on Fire
With words like “revolution,” “crackling,” “energy,” “electricity,” and “excitement” describing the liturgical readings for the season, it’s no wonder Bishop Robert Barron’s series is called Word on Fire. Get inspired with his discussion on Advent with this clip.
11. “What’s Unique About Advent? (Advent Reflections)” by Bishop Barron
Bishop Barron explains the radical differences between Advent and our current culture of “auto-salvation” in under three minutes. How’s that for some fancy terminology to use at your next Christmas (err, I mean Advent) party?
What are your favorite shareable videos about Advent? Enjoy the clips and may your season of preparation be filled with hope and joy!
Regina Lordan, digital editor at Peanut Butter & Grace, is a mother of three with master’s degrees in education and political science. She currently reviews books for Catholic News Service and is a former assistant international editor of Catholic News Service.