Ardmore Moravian Church

Lovefeast and Candle Service

Christmas Eve Lovefeast and Candle Services will be held in the Sanctuary beginning at 2:00 PM, 5:00 PM, and 8:00 PM. The   early   Christians   met   and   broke   bread   together   in   response   to   what Jesus    had    done    for    them.        Their    “feasts    of    agape”    (love)    reflected    the intimate   fellowship,   unity,   and   love   they   were   receiving   from   God.      In   1727, Moravians   experienced   a   powerful   move   of   the   Holy   Spirit   on   their   greatly divided    community.        Many    worshippers    wanted    to    continue    in    prayer, talking   about   what   the   Lord   was   doing.      Groceries   were   ordered   so   that necessary   meals   might   not   interrupt   the   healing   and   renewal   of   God’s   love at   work   among   them.      Recognizing   the   similarity   of   their   experience   to   that of    the    early    church,    Moravians    began    celebrating    simple    “lovefeasts” whenever   the   love   of   Jesus   seemed   at   hand.      The   first   lovefeast   in   Wachovia was   held   on   the   evening   of   the   arrival   of   the   first   Moravian   colonists   in North Carolina, November 17, 1753, at Bethabara. The   Christmas   Eve   Lovefeast,   with   its   lighted   candles,   is   one   of   the   most beautiful   services   of   the   Moravian   Church.      The   custom   originiated   on   the European   continent   at   Marienborn   in   the   year   1747,   and   spread   throughout the   Moravian   world.      In   North   Carolina,   the   candles   were   used   for   the   first time   in   the   children’s   lovefeast   of   Bethabara   and   Bethania   in   1762.      Every person   is   given   a   candle   as   a   reminder   that   Christ   said,   “I   am   the   light   of   the world,”   and   “Ye   are   the   light   of   the   world   -   let   your   light   shine   before   men, that   they   may   see   your   good   works,   and   glorify   your   Father   which   is   in heaven.”