‘Advent by Candlelight’ draws 220 in Fort Kent

FORT KENT, Maine — More than 220 women of all ages gathered on Wednesday, Nov. 7, for a night of fellowship, food and faith in Fort Kent.

St. John Vianney Parish hosted “Advent by Candlelight” at the Knights of Columbus Hall, where uniquely decorated tables and candlelight created the ambience for a grace-filled evening where local women came together for an inspiring night of community.

Cindy Costello, a graduate of the Theology of the Body Institute’s Certification Program, served as the keynote speaker at the sold-out event. In her presentation, “Women and Advent Waiting,” Costello spoke of renewal before the rush of Advent and Christmas sets in, and helped women refocus on the true meaning of the season: the Advent of the Savior.

Costello serves as the coordinator of marriage ministry for the Diocese of Paterson, New Jersey.

In addition to the presentation, attendees enjoyed appetizers, a wide selection of raffle items and desserts. There was no cost to attend thanks to the generosity of many sponsors, including the Catholic Foundation of Maine and several local businesses.

Dave Guthro, spokesman for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, said in a press release that “Advent by Candlelight” has been growing in popularity since the 1970s and is celebrated at many churches throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. At most events, women sign up to host a table and decorate it themselves, from simple to elaborate.

The candlelight, Guthro said, serves as a reminder that Jesus is the “true light of the season.”

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