Is the Liturgical color of advent in church blue or violet?

Our church for the last few years uses blue as their liturgical color but many other churches use violet for Advent.

Blue is not a liturgical color in most of the world.

In our church(protestant) we’ve always used purple. The last advent candle is violet…

I heard a Methodist preacher on the radio Sunday speaking about the fact that many of their churches have adopted a deep blue, like the night sky just before dawn, as the liturgical color of Advent. Some liturgically innovative (to use the kindest term) Catholic parishes have done the same thing, including the church I was married in. They’ve been known to make a quick change to violet if they find out that the Bishop will be visiting. The fact remains that, in the Roman Catholic Church, the liturgical color for Advent has been, and remains, violet.

Blue may be used in some Spanish-speaking countries on certain feasts of Our Lady, but that’s all. It may also appear as a trim color on white vestments, especially those used on feasts of Our Lady, throughout the world.

Before you ask, no, I don’t have a citation for this, but I’m sure that someone else will gladly provide it for you, if you need it.


The following is courtesy of Citations R Us:

From the GIRM (Red print indicates approved adaptations for the U.S.)

"346 Traditional usage should be retained for the vestment colors.
a) White is used in the offices and Masses during the seasons of Easter and Christmas; also on celebrations of the Lord, other than of his passion; on celebrations of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the angels, saints who were not martyrs; on the solemnity of All Saints (1 November); the feasts of the Birth of John the Baptist (24 June), John, apostle, evangelist (27 December), the Chair of Peter (22 February), and the Conversion of Paul (25 January).
b) Red is used on Passion Sunday (Palm Sunday) and Good Friday, Pentecost Sunday, celebrations of the Lord’s passion, birthday feasts of the apostles and evangelists, and celebrations of martyrs.
c) Green is used in the offices and Masses of Ordinary Time.
d) Violet is used in Advent and Lent. It may also be worn in offices and Masses for the dead.
e) Black may be used, where it is the custom, in Masses for the dead.
e) Violet, white, or black vestments may be worn at funeral services and at other offices and Masses for the dead in the dioceses of the United States of America;
f) Rose may be used, where it is the custom, on Guadete Sunday (Third Sunday of Advent) and Laetare Sunday (Fourth Sunday of Lent).

g) Gold or silver colored vestments may be worn on more solemn occasions in the dioceses of the United States of America.
However, as regards liturgical colors, the Conference of Bishops may define and propose to the Holy See adaptations which respond to the needs and genius of the peoples. "

Blue is never mentioned.

Hope that helps.

What do (e) and (g) say in the original non-US GIRM?

They don’t. Those subparagraphs were added for the U.S. edition after the request of the Bishops’ Conference received its reconitio.

So is (f) in the US edition really (e) in the original?

The Canadian GIRM (at least the old one, the new one hasn’t been promulgated yet) said the same thing about the colour for funeral vestments and gold & silver vestments.

The Canadian ORDO specifically notes that BLUE is not to be used in Advent as it’s not an approved colour for liturgy. It goes as far as noting that some parishes use different shades of violet for Advent & Lent: a bluish violet for Advent & a reddish violet for Lent.

Sorry for the error. In the original, it’s

e. Black may be used in Masses for the dead.

(f) is as it appears above. There is no (g).

I recall it was a trend back in the early to mid 1980s in the US to use blue during Advent – vestments AND Advent candles were blue to honor Mary. A lovely gesture, but liturgically incorrect. In most places it came and went rather quickly.

In the large parish we were members at the time (suburban Chicago), that trend was followed by a year wherein the liturgical director declared there should not be an Advent wreath in the church, that the wreath was a FAMILY devotion for home use only. Needless to say, the wrath of parishioners came down on that one – and the next year the wreath returned. Guess the director found out some of us consider those who worship with us very much our “family.”

I don’t have the citation; however, if you notice during Papal Masses (especially Pope Benedict’s installation Mass), he was sure fetching in gold vestments. He wears gold vestments during those major feasts that call for white (except for the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul where he wears red).

We use blue; I much prefer violet. Z. on blue vestments (and more)

Every year I like to affirm my deep affection for the lovely but liturgically illegal color blue. If and when blue vestments are ever approved for use in the Latin Church I will have made a set of blue vestments complete with maniple, chalice veil and burse. However, if blue is ever approved I will probably resent the fact that widespread abuse led to that approval! That how the liberals got Communion in the hand and altar girls and the domination of the vernacular over Latin, etc., etc., etc.

I might also resent the fact that apparently only “progressive” violations of law could in the past receive Vatican okeydokeys. Firestorms of wrath were rained down by aging-hippie pastors and chancery barnacles upon those who want “traditional” things like Latin, birettas, or saying Mass ad orientem – all of which are and always have been perfectly licit.

Of course now that we have Pope Benedict XVI and his work to reinvigorate Catholic tradition and identity, we may be seeing the whole dynamic shift. As a matter of fact, I think the whole blue vestment thing is dying out. The poll (below) will show something about that. But I am rather like a guy with a shotgun who keeps blasting at its legs even as it crawls off to die.

Still, there are many in powerful positions who, though on the losing side of things, who continue causing problems. Can you imagine how the abovementioned would totally freak out if some priest who was not in a position where he could easily defend his status decided to do something so outrageous as, perhaps, use a silent Canon in a Novus Ordo celebration? You would not believe how I was once dressed down, literally screamed at by priest because I once dared to wear an entirely legitimate Roman-style vestment instead of the post-modern horse blanket he preferred. This same fellow consistently used vulgarity when the topic of rubrics was mentioned.

Assent will be given to nearly any aberration while properly imposed discipline is rejected.

Blue is also my personal preferred color for Advent. The main reason is it helps to differentiate from the purple of Lent. It gives Advent its own season with that color selection. I believe while purple is the main color, that it is not “illegal” to use blue at parishes.

The vestments for Advent may be a shade that is more bluish-violet than those used for Lent, but they cannot be blue. They are still supposed to be violet.

What you believe is wrong. it is “illegal” to use blue for advent.

And you base you “believe” on they are not illegal on what? Facts of simply that you like them?

No joke. :stuck_out_tongue:

Wasn’t it the Episcopalians who pretty much ‘started’ using Blue for advent (after all, since blue is not licit for Roman Catholics then where did our priests get the vestments, eh?) and in the happy spirit of ecumenism and ‘sharing’ some of our more ‘progressive’ clergy adopted them?

At the risk of sounding more nitpicky, because yes, surely I realize that we need to be thinking and doing more for the poor, that there are other issues like the scandals, or even hand-holding, such that being CONCERNED about ‘blue advent vestments’ may look as though I’m ‘gunning for’ our good priests and being a ‘pharisee’ who would rather go SMEARING people for something which is either really NOT WRONG AT ALL or is a ‘legitimate choice by the priest’ or even if it is acknowledged to be wrong is ‘no big deal compared with all the OTHER things I SHOULD be concerned for’. . .

I wish we had fewer “popes” and ‘spirit-of-vatican-2’ and ‘whatever-other-name-you-choose-to-insert-which-boils-down-to-I-wanna-do-it-my-way-so-you-can-lump-it’ members of our clergy, and more humble, obedient-to-authority, loving shepherds-of-souls priests.

Because when you get humble etc. priests you will get more of the laity becoming humble too. . .and when you get ‘papibile-in-their-own-minds’ innovator priests, well, you get more of the laity becoming like THEM.

Just my :twocents:

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