4. Advent - Christmas and its customs

Christmas time
Christmas time
We celebrate Christmas every year. In recent years, if there has been an increasing “consumer craze” in which the “wishes” (or demands?) Of the children have grown, we would like to go into the origin of “Christmas” today and the question - so good it is possible to answer why we celebrate Christmas in the first place.

We celebrate Christmas every year. In recent years, if there has been an increasing “consumer craze” in which the “wishes” (or demands?) Of the children have grown, we would like to go into the origin of “Christmas” today and the question - so good it is possible to answer why we celebrate Christmas in the first place.

Christmas markets, Advent wreaths, decorations on windows, in gardens and shops. Then there are the beautiful evenings with loved ones and, of course, the famous “Christmas dinner”, which in part is more like gluttony than a good meal.

But why do we actually celebrate this Christmas the way we celebrate it? As most of us know, “Christmas” is a Christian festival. The birth of Jesus Christ was originally celebrated. The Church put the birth of Jesus Christ on December 25, as the exact date has not been preserved. So you celebrate Christmas because on that day God became human.

The religious part could now be expanded as desired. However, we want to focus more on current customs and the current time.

So we wondered why you actually decorate fir trees. After all, around 30 million fir trees are felled for the German market - every year! It remains to be seen whether it is ecologically sensible to fell a tree for only two or a maximum of three weeks of use. But the "Christmas tree tradition" goes back to the 14th century. The Romans gave twigs and wreaths of conifers on special occasions, since the tree is considered a symbol of eternal life.

Attaching the branches of conifers to houses should protect against harm. The English Queen Victoria had the first Christmas tree decorated in 1840. Everything you had was generally used as Christmas tree decorations. Around 1650 the Swiss, for example, decorated their tree with apples and cheese. Wealthy people adorned their trees with dolls, clothes, or silver jewelry.

The poorer people decorated the trees with home-made Christmas decorations.

At the end of the 19th century, the Christmas tree top was designed and the jewelry we know today slowly developed.

Customs for Christmas

The Christmas present takes place on Christmas Eve, on December 24th. Classically, the children are called into the parlor in the afternoon or early evening and are allowed to unwrap gifts under the Christmas tree. Afterwards they eat together. Families often go to the midnight mass, also called Christmas mass.

Of course, singing Christmas carols is also part of western customs. But there are beautiful, but also strange Christmas customs in other countries and cultures.

The Japanese are said to like going to “Kentucky Fried Chicken” on Christmas days and eating a fried Christmas chicken there. This bizarre phenomenon is said to be triggered by an advertising campaign from the 70s. To this day, Christmas Eve is said to be one of the best-selling days of the year.

The Spaniards, on the other hand, have been playing the lottery since the 19th century. Because at Christmas the biggest sum of money of the year is played out. It is called "El Gordo". One or the other Saarland probably heard this lottery on the radio.

In Venezuela's capital Caracas, it is custom not to go to the Christmas mass on foot, but to go to the church with roller skates. Parts of the city are even blocked to prevent accidental accidents.

The Swedes also have a funny custom on Christmas Eve: On December 24th at 15:00 p.m., an hour-long short film special by Donald Duck follows. This is followed by Swedish films, comedies and children's films.

Of course, the Americans should not be missing from our list either: a pickle is hidden somewhere on the Christmas tree and the finder receives another Christmas gift.

This list could also be expanded significantly.

The feast of love

Finally, all we have left to do is wish you a nice 4th Advent. Always remember: Christmas is the festival of love. Jump over their shadows, build bridges, forget prejudices: cultivate human interaction and spend time with the people who are important to them.