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Saint Andrew

Almighty God, who didst give such grace unto thy holy Apostle Saint Andrew, that he readily obeyed the calling of thy Son Jesus Christ, and followed him without delay: Grant unto us all, that we,being called by thy holy Word, may forthwith give up ourselves obediently to fulfil thy holy commandments; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Feast of St Andrew is generally listed as the first feast of the Christian year, even though it may precede the actual beginning of the year, Advent I, by several days. Why? Well, Andrew is one of the Apostles, so his feast is a major observance. And, by a quirk of the calendar, it works out that the First Sunday of Advent is always the Sunday closest to this feast. As a result, most people find it easier to identify Advent I by looking for the Sunday closest to November 30th than it is to count backwards four weeks from Christmas (which often involves flipping pages on a calendar).

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