Everybody Is celebrating Crlstmas . lt Is obligatory for each crlstlan to celebrate the birth of Crist. l decided to do my research on how Armenian people celebrate Cristmas in Armenia and in abroad, and are there differences between them. Why I chose thls,because It Is interesting for me to know how do people celebrate Crlstmas in other countries and are there any differences? There are many differences of celebrating Cristmas in Armenia and in abroad. Christmas is the Birthday of Christ is celebrated by people all over the world.
The Armenian Church celebrates the holy birth (Sourp Dznount) of Jesus Christ on January 6. In Armenian tradition, this feast day commemorates not only the birth of Christ, but also His baptism by John the Baptist. The latter Is remembered through the “Blessing of Water” ceremony, which follows the Divine Liturgy on January 6. On the eve of the Feast of the Natlvlty and Theophany of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the JrakalouytsDivine Liturgy (the lighting of the lamps service) is celebrated in honor of the manifestation of Jesus as the Son of God.
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It is custom for the faithful to hold lit candles during this special service. During the one-week fast that precedes the Feast f the Nativity and Theophany of Our Lord Jesus Christ, it was customary for the faithful in historic Armenia to clean their homes with care. They prepared themselves both physically and spiritually. many eating only one light meal a day. Then the evening of Jrakalouyts arrived. The church bells pealed forth. Bearing lit lanterns and candles, the faithful would go to church to celebrate the birth of Jesus.
The Divine Liturgy would take place not long before dawn. The solemn Vesper Vlgll would be performed. Then young choristers would begin to read or chant the various prophecies of the coming Messiah. Finally, the time for the solemn reading of the prophecy of Daniel arrived. It was considered a great honor to be one of those chosen to read this moving prophecy. The various families of the village would compete with each other every year to ensure the selection of one of their own to read this prophecy.
One person would read the narrative of the prophecy and three others would chant the song of the three holy childrenвЂ”Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. After this, the altar curtain, which had been drawn in front of the altar, was opened and the Divine Liturgy would begin. Everyone received Holy Communion. At the end of the liturgy, the faithful would return home with candles lit from the sanctuary lamp, so that they could light the lanterns and hearth fire of their homes with “the light of Christmas. ” Everyone, already awake and clothed in his or her best finery, hastened to church.
All were eager to arrive in time so as not to miss any part of the service, especially the singing of the hymn of the angels, “Glory in the Highest” (Park ee Partzoons). On the following day, the mystery our Lord’s baptism in the River Jordan is remembered in the ceremony of the Jurorhnek, or the “Blessing of Water. In ancient times, this ceremony was celebrated by the riverside or sea shore, but, for various reasons, it was later confined to the interior of the churches. During the ceremony, the cross is dipped in water, recalling Christ’s immersion in the Jordan River.
Blessed oil, or Holy Chrism (Muron), is poured into the water from a dove- shaped container, symbolizing the appearance at the baptism of the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove and the voice of the Father proclaiming to all that Jesus is His Son. The Holy Chrism is prepared in Holy Etchmiadzin and is blessed by the Catholicos ssisted by the bishops. Muron contains olive oil, balsam and the essence of forty different flowers and herbs. At the end of the ceremony, members of the congregation are given the blessed water to drink, thereby sharing in the life giving act of Christ.
As water is essential to the life of the body, drinking the blessed water is a reminder that participation in the acts of Christ is essential for eternal life. Traditionally a layperson would be selected for this special privilegeвЂ”known as the “godfather of the cross. ” The people would then approach with reverence, kiss the ross held by the godfather, and take some holy water home with them. Nowdays people celebrating more modern. The most beautiful and meaningful parts of the holiday occur at home and in church. Many families go to church on Christmas Eve and Christmas morning.
Then they sit down to enjoy a traditional Christmas dinner. According to tradition, the main dish is fish and rice prepared with butter. Wine is served with dinner. In England the day after Christmas is called Boxing Day because boys used to go round collecting money in clay boxes. Traditionally, it was a day when mployers distributed money, food, cloth (material) or other valuable goods to their employees. For many people Boxing Day is a time to recover from the excesses of Christmas day and an opportunity to spent time with family, friends and neighbors.
Some people choose to go for a walk in the countryside, while other flock to the post-Christmas sales in large stores that often begin on Boxing Day. Some people even spend part of the night and early morning queuing to get into the stores when the best bargains are still available. There are a number of stories behind the origin of the term ‘Boxing Day’. It used to be customary for employers to give their employees or servants a gift of money or food in a small box on this day. This is still customary for people who deliver letters or newspapers, although the gift may be given before Christmas Day. ogether on this day and distribute boxes of practical goods, such as agricultural tools, food and cloth. This was payment for the work that they had done throughout the passed year. other stories relate to servants being allowed to take a portion of the food left over from the Christmas celebrations in a box to their families and the istribution of alms from the Church collection box to poor parishioners. These traditions have evolved into the Christmas hampers that many large employers distribute, although these are now often distributed in the week before Christmas.
Boxing Day is also an important day for sports events. Traditionally, using dogs to hunt for foxes was a popular sport amongst the upper classes. Pictures of hunters on horseback dressed in red coats and surrounded by hunting dogs are often seen as symbolic of Boxing Day. Horse racing and football (soccer) are now popular sports. In England, the only thing that people ate on the day before the feast was Frumenty, which is, was a kind of porridge made from corn. Over the years the recipe changed. Eggs, fruit, spice, lumps of meat and dried plums were added.
The whole mixture was wrapped in a cloth and boiled. This is how plum pudding began. ln England the traditional Christmas dinner is roast turkey with vegetables and sauces. For dessert it is rich, fruity Christmas pudding with brandy sauce. Mince pies, pastry cases filled with a mixture of chopped dried fruit. ln England also they elect Boy Bishops in commemoration of St. Nicholas compassion for children. These mock bishops were allowed to do the duties of the ecclesiastic except deliver the Mass. In Italy Christmas starts eight days before Christmas and lasts still after the Feast of Epiphany.
Musical salutes are made at the shrine of the Virgin Mary and songs are played at the homes of carpenters in honor of St. Joseph. Eight days before Christmas, a special Novena of prayers and church services begin. It all ends on Christmas Day. ln Italy they using a crib to help tell the Christmas story was made very popular by St. Francis of Assisi in 1223. The previous year he had visited Bethlehem and saw where the stable, where it was thought that Jesus was born. A lot of Italian families have a Nativity crib in their homes. The city of Naples in Italy is world famous for its cribs and crib making.
These are known as ‘Presepe Napoletano’ (meaning Neapolitan Cribs). The first crib scene in Naples is thought to go back to 1025 and was in the Church of S. Maria del presepe , this was even before St. Francis of Assisi had made cribs very popular! Having cribs in your own home became popular in the 16th century and it’s still popular today before that only churches and monasteries had cribs). Cribs are traditionally put out on the 8th December. But the figure of the baby Jesus isn’t put into the crib until the evening/night of December 24th!
One special thing about Neapolitan cribs is that they have always been displayed not only characters and fgures from the Christmas Story, but also ‘every day’ people and objects (such as houses, waterfalls, food, animals and even fgures of famous people and politicians! ). Naples is also the home to the largest crib scene in the world, which has over 600 objects on it! One old Italian ustom is that children go out Carol singing and playing songs on shepherds pipes, wearing shepherds sandals and hats. On Christmas Eve, no food is eaten until after Christmas Cake called ‘Panettone’ which is like a dry fruity sponge cake.
Epiphany is also important in Italy. On Epiphany night, children believe that an old lady called ‘Befana’ brings presents for them. The story about Befana bringing presents is very similar to the story of Babouska told in Russia. Children put stockings up by the fireplace for Befana to fill. On Christmas day ‘Babbo Natale’ (Santa Claus) might bring them some small gifts, ut the main day for present giving is on Epiphany. The man we know as Santa Claus has a history all his own. Today, he is thought of mainly as the Jolly man in red, but his story stretches all the way back to the third century.
As early as 1773 the name appeared in the American press as “St. A Claus,” but it was the popular author Washington Irving who gave Americans their first detailed information about the Dutch version of Saint Nicholas. In his History of New York, published in 1809 under the pseudonym Diedrich Knickerbocker, Irving described the arrival of the saint on horseback. In looking for the historical roots of Santa Claus, one must go very deep in the past. One discovers that Santa Claus as we know him is a combination of many different legends and mythical creatures.
The basis for the Christian-era Santa Claus is Bishop Nicholas of Smyrna (Izmir), in what is now Turkey. Nicholas lived in the 4th century A. D. He was very rich, generous, and loving toward children. Often he gave Joy to poor children by throwing gifts in through their windows. Children naturally wanted to know where Santa Claus actually came from. Where did he live when he wasn’t delivering presents? Those questions gave rise to the legend that Santa Claus lived at the North Pole, where his Christmas-gift workshop was also located.
Why we celebrating Cristmas on the 6th of January and why others on 25th of December.? No one knows the real birthday of Jesus! No date is given in the Bible. the mysteries of the birth and baptism of Jesus continued to observe Christmas on January 6. The Armenian Church has maintained that ancient tradition to this day, whereas the Greek-speaking Christian world switched to the Latin tradition at the end of the 4th century. There are many different raditions and theories as to why Christmas is celebrated on December 25th.
A very early Christian tradition said that the day when Mary was told that she would have a very special baby, Jesus, was on March 25th – and it’s still celebrated today on the 25th March. Nine months after the 25th March is the 25th December! March 25th was also the day some early Christians thought the world had been made, and also the day that Jesus died on when he was an adult. Even at the time of the Holy Apostles, the traditions in the Christian churches in the different parts of the world were not uniform. In fact, Christmas was probably not observed at all in the very early Church.
Later, the mysteries of the birth and baptism of Jesus Christ began to be observed on January 6. By the end of the 3rd century, Christmas in Rome was celebrated on December 25, which coincided with a major pagan feast. The Eastern churches, meanwhile, continued to observe Christmas on January 6. The Armenian Church has maintained that ancient tradition to this day, whereas the Greek-speaking Christian world switched to the Latin tradition at the end of the 4th century. Armenian-American households may exchange Christmas ifts on December 25, since it is the custom in American society to do so.
In some of our churches in the United States, it has become traditional to observe the feast of St. Stephen the Proto-Martyr on Christmas Eve (December 24), though that feast is movable and may not always fall on December 24. If possible, the faithful should fast during the seven-day period preceding January 6, and should inform their children that they are fasting as a way of preparation for Christmas. On the evening of January 5, families should attend church and participate in the celebration of the Christmas Eve Divine Liturgy. They should do the same on the morning of January 6.
No one knows the real birthday of Jesus! No date is given in the Bible, so why do we celebrate it on the 25th December? The early Christians certainly had many arguments as to when it should be celebrated! Also, the birth of Jesus probably didn’t happen in the year IAD but slightly earlier, somewhere between 2BC and 7BC . The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336AD, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine (he was the first Christian Roman Emperor). A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on the 25th December.
And little about Christmas Tree. Everywhere celebrating Christmas people are decorating Cristmas tree. The evergreen fir tree has traditionally been used to celebrate winter festivals (pagan and Christian) for thousands of years. Pagans used branches of it to decorate their homes during the winter solstice, as it made them think of the spring to come. Other early Christmas Trees, across many part of northern europe, were cherry or hawthorn plants (or a ranch of the plant) that were put into pots and brought inside, so they would hopefully flower at Christmas time.
If you couldn’t afford a real plant, people made pyramids of woods and they were decorated to look like a tree with paper, apples and being displayed in a home. Artificial Christmas Trees really started becoming popular in the early 20th century. In the Edwardian period Christmas Trees made from colored ostrich feathers were popular at ‘fashionable’ parties. Around 1900 there was even a short fashion for white trees – so if you thought colored trees are a new invention they’re not!