It cannot be determined with any degree of certainty when the celebration of Advent was first introduced into the Church.
The preparation for the feast of the Nativity of Our Lord was not held before the feast itself existed, and of this we find no evidence before the end of the fourth century, when, according to Duchesne [ Christian Worship (London, 1904), 260], it was celebrated throughout the whole Church, by some on 25 December, by others on 6 January. Caesarius , Bishop of Arles (502-542), in which we find mention of a preparation before the birthday of Christ ; still, to judge from the context, no general law on the matter seems then to have been in existence.
Flowers and relics of Saints are not to be placed on the altars during the Office and Masses of this time, except on the third Sunday ; and the same prohibition and exception exist in regard to the use of the organ.
The popular idea that the four weeks of Advent symbolize the four thousand years of darkness in which the world was enveloped before the coming of Christ finds no confirmation in the Liturgy.
As Lessons for the first Nocturn she prescribes chapters from the prophet Isaias, who speaks in scathing terms of the ingratitude of the house of Israel, the chosen children who had forsaken and forgotten their Father; who tells of the Man of Sorrows stricken for the sins of His people; who describes accurately the passion and death of the coming Saviour and His final glory ; who announces the gathering of the Gentiles to the Holy Hill.
In the second Nocturn the Lessons on three Sundays are taken from the eighth homily of Pope St.
During this time the faithful are admonished To attain this object the Church has arranged the Liturgy for this season.
In the official prayer, the Breviary, she calls upon her ministers, in the Invitatory for Matins, to adore "the Lord the King that is to come", "the Lord already near", "Him Whose glory will be seen on the morrow".
Binterim says that there was also a law that pictures should be covered during Advent.Leo (440-461) on fasting and almsdeeds as a preparation for the advent of the Lord, and on one Sunday (the second) from St.Jerome's commentary on Isaias 11:1, which text he interprets of the Blessed Virgin Mary as "the rod out of the root of Jesse".This was allowed under IWC rules, although most IWC members oppose it.However, in March 2014 the UN's International Court of Justice ruled that the Japanese whaling program, called "JARPA II", in the Southern Ocean, including inside the Australian Whale Sanctuary, was not in accordance with the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling, and was not for scientific purposes, as it had claimed.