Christmas is one of the most widely celebrated festivals in the world. It is an annual celebration, commemorating the birth of Jesus and is celebrated in different ways around the world, depending on the country, region and traditions. Some of the common traditions include decorating of Christmas trees , hanging of wreaths on the doors, hanging of Christmas stockings and candy canes, singing Christmas carols, exchanging Christmas cards and attending church service. Here are a few customs and traditions during Christmas in different countries..
Customs and Traditions for Christmas in different countries
In Norway a legend says that on Christmas eve evil spirits and witches come out into the open looking for brooms to ride on. Thus to thwart the witches all the brooms in the house are hidden and the men of the house go outside and fire a shotgun to scare the bad spirits away.
At the beginning of Christmas eve dinner, the head of the family takes a spoon of loksa ( a traditional dish) and throws it up at the ceiling. The more the food that remains glued to the ceiling, the richer his crops will be for the following year.
In japan Christmas eve has become a holiday where couples spend time together. Another unusual custom in Japan is eating KFC around Christmas due to a successful advertising campaign made in the 1970 ‘s. This custom is so famous that the stores take reservations well in advance. A favorite in the Japanese Christmas feasts is the white sponge cake, covered in cream and decorated with strawberries.
Christmas here is quite specific unlike some other countries. The people of Guatemala dress up in fancy hats called purtinas . They stand in a line and dance and also sing songs in spanish.
Some of the customs of Mexican Christmas are not prevalent anywhere else in the world . Like, over 9 days groups of towns people go from door to door in a fashion of when the parents of the unborn baby Jesus looked for shelter to pass the night when they arrived at Bethlehem , and are often called inside the homes to be a part of the breaking of the candy filled pinata.
In Venezuela, presents are bought by baby Jesus instead of Santa Claus like in other countries. People in cities towns or neighborhoods come together for the “patinatas” night festival where children go play on roller blades ,skateboards and bicycles. In other neighborhoods there is a custom called “parranda” where people go from house to house with music and Christmas songs and they often stop at house to get some food and drink.
7. Central Europe:
In countries of central Europe the day of celebration is Christmas eve and is usually observed as a fasting day. In some places children are told that they will see a golden Pig if they hold fast after dinner.
Here the Christmas Celebrations comprise of lighting candles and laying wreaths on family graves and also going to church on Christmas day. They celebrate the festival of Lucia, who is the queen of lights. A selected Lucia is crowned with candles , then she made to parade the town with her followers who are all dressed in white whilst singing Christmas songs.
On Christmas eve children keep a bowl of porridge for a little gnome called julenisse who lives in the attic also it is said that on Christmas eve it is dangerous to sleep alone thus everyone in the household sleep together on a freshly spread bed of straw.
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