With the beginning of December just a few weeks away thoughts may be turning to getting hold of a good advent calendar. Advent calendars where first used by German Lutherans in the early 19th century, often by simply drawing chalk lines on their doors each day. Now they are often used for children as a great way to count down to Christmas Day when we celebrate the birth of Jesus.
Sadly most advent calendars these days are stuffed with chocolate and may not contain any references to Jesus. Here though are some of the best free online sources of Christian advent calendars, please leave a comment if you know any better ones!
The Nativity advent calendar
The Nativity advent calendar is provided by New Line Cinema who created the Nativity film. You need to download the software (Mac and PC versions are available) and you can then run it each day. Every day you get a picture from the film and a verse from the bible by clicking on the stars. I’m assuming once it actually gets to December the correct star for the day will flash otherwise it is quite tricky to work out which one to press!
Graphically the Nativity calendar is impressive, and it is clear Christian too.
Make it from scratch!
If you’re artistic and creative then you may want to make the entire advent calendar yourself. St Luke’s Episcopal Church has a simple to follow guide.
If that all seems at bit much then the advent calendar template used at Presentation Helper may be of use. It is not actually Christian as you can see from the image to the right. However it would be easy to tweak it to have a Christian theme. It comes in a powerpoint format that you can use on your computer, or you can print it off to make it more of a traditional advent calendar.
Advent calendars for your website
The example provided works, but I’d imagine it would take a little bit of effort to get this advent calendar looking good for your website.
The American Bible Societies advent page is not strictly an advent calendar, but it does have lots of devotional materials with a particular focus on the gospels.
Other advent calendars
- The Jesse tree is an online version of the tradition of hanging symbolic ornaments on Christmas tress that represented the Messianic prophecies.
- Artcyclopedia 2004 advent calendar is very good if you like traditional Christian images and Renaissance art.
Find more Christmas songs and resources
You can find more free Christmas stuff including sermons, advent calendars, music, clip art and much more at the Christmas page. You can also find lots of free Christmas songs at the ‘free Christmas songs’ section. image by rache.