The Christmas holiday abounds in interesting customs and traditions. Several of those Christmas customs and traditions are wholeheartedly religious, while others are secular and relaxed. Some countries likewise have a national flavor within their customs of Christmas. So evidently, the customs and traditions of Christmas are neither singular nor homogenous throughout the world. These keep varying from region to region, and from country to country. Popular Christmas traditions like the exchanging of gifts, decorating the Christmas tree, the Yule log, the holly bough, the kissing under mistletoe etc are just about common to all or any places.
In Christian countries, Christmas is just about the most crucial holiday of the year, economically speaking. Christmas is celebrated for a span of twelve days following December 25 in the United Kingdom. This twelve-day Christmas tradition is marked by huge celebration and feasting and ends on the Twelfth Night or the Feast of the Epiphany. This custom of elongating the Christmas celebrations is gaining popularity by the year. Christmas celebrations begin weeks before the actual day in the United States and the United Kingdom to lengthen the shopping season of Christmas and also allowing additional time for meetings and greetings.
The countries celebrating Christmas on December 25, call the afternoon before ‘Christmas eve’ and the afternoon after by varying names. postari de sfantul andrei Some like Germany, Poland call it the Second Christmas Day, some Commonwealth countries call the afternoon after Christmas ‘Boxing Day’ whilst the Irish and Romanians call it St. Stephen’s Day. Some pagan Christmas customs and traditions have been incorporated by some Christian missionaries within their celebration of Christmas, nevertheless the conservative Christians keep from such celebration of Christmas. Christmas celebrations were banned in the Soviet Union for 75 years following the Russian revolution and the extremist Christian fundamentalists still consider Christmas a pagan holiday, unsanctioned by the Bible and hence strictly keep removed from celebrating it.
But besides these religious and serious overtones in the Christmas customs and traditions, there’s also secular and more relaxed observances of the Christmas holiday. For instance, the tradition of giving Christmas gifts is one of the commonest traditions of the holiday irrespective of region or country. Friends and families exchange gifts and greetings, children hang stockings in the United States or keep empty toy-boxes for Santa Claus to fill it down with toys, candies and other gifts. In some places, it’s a custom and tradition for children to put up shoes on window sills on the Christmas night.
One of the extremely popular and inseparable customs and traditions of Christmas could be the Christmas card. Be it your closest pal, or a remote relative, your teacher or your colleagues, your household or your neighbor, every one gets a card on Christmas. Even if folks are separated by miles, a ‘Miss You’ Christmas card is sure to reach more often than not.
Decorating homes and the Christmas tree are again well-known Christmas customs and traditions. It’s great joy getting everyone together decking up the halls and doorways with streamers, candles, stars or holly boughs or being with the whole couple of friends as you decorate the Christmas evergreen. Candy canes really are a very favorite Christmas candy, which are also used as decorations. Traditionally people also decorate the outside of the house around the insides. Sometimes Christmas decorations are sponsored by the municipalities.
Christmas parties form the fun the main holiday and are far more a celebration when compared to a custom and tradition of Christmas. Special Christmas meals having a special Christmas menu are customarily served in many countries. During other areas, especially in Eastern Europe, families fast for a few days before the Christmas feast.
In several countries, Christmas dances and Christmas pageants (retelling of the story of Christ) are traditionally held every year. Going caroling in groups is still another extremely popular custom and tradition of Christmas. In this, people go singing carols from door to door just to keep the spirit of the holiday season alive and fresh. Sometimes people visit the neighborhood houses for a good cause too, like for raising donations and funds for the downtrodden and destitute.
With all the boisterous celebration of Christmas staying fine, Christmas continues to be observed as a chiefly religious holiday for lots of people across the globe. It is enough time for soul-searching, spiritual renewal, silent prayers, reading out quotes from the Bible, seeking religious blessings and wishing joys and good tidings to everyone for the days to come. The ceremonies are much toned down in a religious celebration of Christmas. Carols and hymns are sung in the churches and in homes, funds are raised for a good cause, volunteer works are conducted and people visit friends, neighbors and dear ones’ places for get-togethers and traditional Christmas meals. The air’s filled up with a nice peacefulness and warmth. An expression of joy and well-being reverberates all around. People wish each other peace, prosperity, happiness and a really ‘Merry Christmas’ ;.
The religious customs and traditions of Christmas start with Advent (the day when Jesus Christ’s birth was anticipated). This is just about early December. Customs and traditions of the religious celebration include Advent carols and calendars, sometimes also candies and other goodies for the children. Midnight mass or a Mass of the Nativity, featuring Christmas carols, prayers and hymns, are usually held on the Christmas Eve and on the Christmas Day.