The pre-Christmas period called ‚??Advent‚?Ě in the Latin rite is known as ‚??Pylypivka‚?Ě by Ukrainian Catholics. Pylypivka began on November 15th (the day after the Feast of St. Philip the Apostle) and continues for forty days until December 24th.


For the faithful, Pylypivka is a time of preparing our hearts and lives for the coming Christmas season. It‚??s characterized by fasting or the abstinence of certain foods, prayer, attending pre-Christmas services, and acts of charity to others.


The theme of Pylypivka this year at IHMS is ‚??Making Christmas Count‚?Ě. To get things started, a prayer service was held in the school gym on Friday, November 23.


As described during the Pylypivka prayer service, each homeroom teacher at IHMS will display a picture of a Christmas tree with 6 ornaments on it in their class. During each of the 6 weeks of Pylypivka, students will brainstorm ideas on how to ‚??make Christmas count‚?Ě. They will then write or draw their intention for the week on or around the ornament on the tree.


In addition, IHMS will be participating in a Christian service project to assist the less fortunate during Pylypivka. This year Immaculate Heart will be involved in the ‚??Koats for Kids‚?Ě program to get used winter clothing such as parkas, ski pants, boots, mitts, scarves, and hats out to children who need it. These articles of clothing can be left in collection boxes in the front foyer of the school between Thursday, November 29 and Friday, December 7.¬† After December 7th, the articles of clothing will be delivered to the Koats for Kids Program.


And finally, during Pylypivka the students and staff will be selling ‚??Mary‚??s Angels‚?Ě. These glass figurines are a keepsake and remembrance for deceased loved ones. When an individual purchases an Angel, a prayer card is filled out at the school with the loved one‚??s name. The cards are attached to an Angel ornament and placed on the ‚??Mary‚??s Angels Tree‚?Ě located in the front foyer of the school. A Divine Liturgy will be celebrated by the students and staff on Friday, December 21st at 1:00 p.m. for the intentions of the loved ones.

An example of A Mary’s Angel figurine for 2012


After the Christmas season the Angels will be sent home with each of the students that sold them. The Angels are then given to the clients who purchased them as a keepsake in memory of their loved ones.


Each Mary‚??s Angel can be purchased for $5.00, or a package of three for $15.00. Order forms can be printed out from the email sent from the school on November 21. The proceeds from this project will go towards Marian Hour Centre, Radio Rosary on CKJS where the rosary is recited every evening from 10:30 – 10:45 p.m.