History of Christmas

Christmas is celebrated on December 25 and is both a sacred religious holiday and a worldwide cultural and commercial phenomenon. For two millennia, people around the world have been observing it with traditions and practices that are both religious and secular in nature. Christians celebrate Christmas Day as the anniversary of the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, a spiritual leader whose teachings form the basis of their religion. Popular customs include exchanging gifts, decorating Christmas trees, attending church, sharing meals with family and friends and, of course, waiting for Santa Claus to arrive. December 25 - Christmas Day - has been a federal holiday in the United States since 1870.

Observance and traditions

Church attendance

Merry Christmas

Christmas Day, is a Festival in the Lutheran Churches, a holy day of obligation in the Roman Catholic Church, and a Principal Feast of the Anglican Communion. Other Christian denominations do not rank their feast days but nevertheless place importance on Christmas Eve/Christmas Day, as with other Christian feasts like Easter, Ascension Day, and Pentecost. As such, for Christians, attending a Christmas Eve or Christmas Day church service plays an important part in the recognition of the Christmas season. Christmas, along with Easter, is the period of highest annual church attendance. A 2010 survey by Life Way Christian Resources found that six in ten Americans attend church services during this time. In the United Kingdom, the Church of England reported an estimated attendance of 2.5 million people at Christmas services in 2015.

Decorations

A Christmas decoration is any of several types of ornamentation used at Christmastime and the greater holiday season. The traditional colors of Christmas are pine green (evergreen), snow white, and heart red. Gold and silver are also very common, as are other metallic colours. Typical images on Christmas decorations include Baby Jesus, Father Christmas, Santa Claus, and the star of Bethlehem.
In many countries, such as Sweden, people start to set up their Advent and Christmas decorations on the first day of Advent. Liturgically, this is done in some parishes through a Hanging of the Greens ceremony. In the Western Christian world, the two traditional days when Christmas decorations are removed are Twelfth Night and if they are not taken down on that day, Candlemas, the latter of which ends the Christmas-Epiphany season in some denominations. Taking down Christmas decorations before Twelfth Night, as well as leaving the decorations up beyond Candlemas, is historically considered to be inauspicious

Music and Carols

Christmas music comprises a variety of genres of music regularly performed or heard around the Christmas season. Music associated with Christmas may be purely instrumental, or, in the case of carols or songs, may employ lyrics whose subject matter ranges from the nativity of Jesus Christ, to gift-giving and merrymaking, to cultural figures such as Santa Claus, among other topics. Many songs simply have a winter or seasonal theme, or have been adopted into the canon for other reasons

 
Traditional cuisine

A special Christmas family meal is traditionally an important part of the holiday's celebration, and the food that is served varies greatly from country to country. Some regions have special meals for Christmas Eve, such as Sicily, where 12 kinds of fish are served. In the United Kingdom and countries influenced by its traditions, a standard Christmas meal includes turkey, goose or other large bird, gravy, potatoes, vegetables, sometimes bread and cider. Special desserts are also prepared, such as Christmas pudding, mince pies, Christmas cake, Panettone and Yule log cake. Traditional Christmas meal in Central Europe is fried carp or other fish.

Christmas gift

A Christmas gift or Christmas present is a gift given in celebration of Christmas. Christmas gifts are often exchanged on Christmas Eve (December 24), Christmas Day itself (December 25) or on the last day of the twelve-day Christmas season, Twelfth Night (January 5). The practice of giving gifts during Christmastide, according to Christian tradition, is symbolic of the presentation of the gifts by the Three Wise Men to the infant Jesus.

Sources

Christmas. (n.d.). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christmas

Christmas music. (n.d.). https://apppage.net/preview/com.newandromo.dev314658.app1780103

History of Christmas. (2009). https://www.history.com/topics/christmas/history-of-christmas#how-did-christmas-start

AU Christmas

The first ABAC Christmas Celebration was organized on 24 December 1979. It was a funfair for faculties, staff, students and alumni. Participants enjoyed food booths featuring Thai foods, variety of games, and sports tournament of basketball, chair ball between lecturers, staff and alumni. ABAC President, Rev. Bro. Prathip M. Komolmas presented rewards to winners.

The AU Christmas annually celebrated since the AU’s inception, takes place on December 24 at both campuses, highlighted activities included the yearly outstanding awards presentation to well-deserved personnel: i.e. the AU Awards for Excellence, Staff of the Year Awards and 25-Year of Service Awards as well as the blessed birthday celebration of Rev. Bro. Dr. Prathip Martin Komolmas, Rector Emeritus, the festive event also featured sumptuous buffet dinner provided for faculty, staff, their family members and honored guests.

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