The Advent Wreath, a circle of greenery, is marked by four candles that represent the four Sundays of the season of Advent. An additional candle is lit as each new Sunday is celebrated in Advent. Advent wreaths are used both in churches and in homes for devotional purposes. In most Episcopal churches the four surrounding candles are blue (or three blue and one pink) and the center candle is white and is lit on Christmas Eve.
The first candle symbolizes hope and is called the “Prophet’s Candle.” The prophets of the Old Testament, especially Isaiah, waited in hope for the Messiah’s arrival.
The second candle represents love and is called “Bethlehem’s Candle.” Micah had foretold that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem, which is also the birthplace of King David. It also is named the peace candle as the Bible indicated "His name shall be called...Prince of Peace."
The third candle symbolizes joy and is called the “Shepherd’s Candle.” To the shepherd’s great joy, the angels announced that Jesus came for humble, unimportant people like them, too. In liturgy, the color rose signifies joy.
The fourth candle represents peace and is called the “Angel’s Candle.” The angels announced that Jesus came to bring peace--He came to bring people close to God and to each other again.
The fifth candle represents light and purity and is called “Christ’s candle.” It is placed in the middle and is lit on Christmas Eve.