One of the most
important Christian holiday – Christmas is celebrated by billions of people
around the world on one day of December 25th ,
or January 7th
On this day, Christians celebrate
the birth of Jesus Christ, although there
is no mention of the date of Jesus Christ’s birth, even in the Bible
is not mentioned. It seems that the one
who decided that December 25th
to be the day of Jesus’ birth, was Pope Julius I in
the fourth century.
In the Romanian language, the name
of this holiday (Crăciun)
has its origin in the Latin word "creatio”
(creation - here as the birth) or it can have a close connection with the
celebration of the winter solstice among Slavic peoples: Korochun (in Russian),
Kracun (in Czech and in Slovak), Krachun (in Hungarian, and the word Karácsony means
In English, the name of this holiday
(Christmas), composed of two words: Christ, which comes from the Greek "Khristos” (Χριστός), a translation of the
Hebrew "Māšîaḥ” (Messiah), and Mæsse, which comes from Latin "missa”, the celebration of the
At Christmas there is a lot of
pre-Christian traditions that are intertwined with the Christian’s ones, the
origin of the pre-Christian traditions being forgotten over the years. Thus,
habits such as gift-giving and merrymaking have their origin in the Roman feast
of Saturnalia, lights and charity in the Roman New Year, and various food in
the Germanic peoples holidays.
If the origin
of this holiday is the winter solstice of the ancient peoples, nowadays Christmas
is considered as the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies concerning the
Messiah's arrival on Earth. The Gospel of Matthew and the Gospel of Luke are
the only books of the Bible that describe the Jesus’ birth, by his mother Mary
who was assisted by her husband, Joseph, birthday that took place in Bethlehem.
Over time, the celebration of Christmas has become
unthinkable in the absence of traditions such as gift
giving, carols, exchanging postcards,
church services, delicious food, decorations (Christmas tree, Christmas lights, wreaths of fir, etc.) and
of course, the omnipresent Santa Claus.
period, preparations are more intense with the approaching of
this important celebration. Regarding to it, ornaments of all kinds are always
present: the Christmas lights which decorate the cities tending to enlighten
our path to this celebration and to snatch a child smile on our faces, songs
that delight our souls while carols will remember you about the birth of Jesus
We must not
forget about the Christmas tree often decorated by the family members with
lights, tinsel and Christmas balls, being ready for such important celebration.
All these traditions are older than half a millennium.
More than that,
the hand bells ring and purify the atmosphere by their angelic sound, candles
that illuminate homes and people’s hearts, fir wreaths which delight our sense
of smell by the fresh fragrance of it, sweets so appreciated
by children and adults at the same time, and the angels which make you confuse
them with the people in the company you spend this period.
children, a greater importance is that every year Santa Claus brings gifts to
them, the adults enjoying their smiles and enthusiasm with this occasion.
Regarding the gift giving, this custom has its roots in a the Roman feast (Saturnalia)
when they offered gifts, even slaves received
some gifts from
the rich, and the greatest gift was to enjoy the freedom as a free man during of the entire feast.
The Story of
Santa Claus is as long as the distance between the U.S.A. and the country where
you live, because the story of Santa Claus originated from this country. So
Santa Claus is none other than the new version of Saint Nicholas whose story is
almost two millennia old. The confusion between St. Nicholas and Santa Claus
was created by different names in English (Saint Nicholaus) and Dutch
(Sinterklaas). Santa Claus has become known thanks to the American pastor,
Clement Clarke Moore, author of a poem that describes St. Nicholas as a nice,
chubby and smiling character who travels riding in a sleigh pulled by reindeers
and offer gifts to children.
impact had well-known novel "A Christmas Carol" written by Charles
Dickens, that influenced many aspects of Christmas that are celebrated today in
the Western culture, and increasingly more of the eastern culture, such as
family gatherings, seasonal food and drinks, dances, games and the spirit of
novel, Dickens tried to create a Christmas focused on family and generosity, in
contrast to the on community-centred and church-centred observations.
Thanks to this
story the wish „Merry Christmas” became more popular.
creates a warm atmosphere during a cold winter, a dreamlike atmosphere that
encourages us to be better to each other, to share love with others and to
discover once again that being close to the loved ones is the most precious
Now I want to
say some words about Christmas in Poland and in Romania. The way we celebrate
it’s very similar to Polish. But there’re some differences. For example we
don’t celebrate Christmas Eve (there’s only in the North Romania). I saw that
here people don’t eat meat during this day, but they eat fish and they prepare
fried dishes. They also have the custom with sharing thin wafer (opłatek) and
saying wishes to other people. At midnight they go to the church. About Romania
– we also go to the church, but in the evening of Christmas Eve. Very popular
is the custom where groups of children go form house to house and sing carols
(at night 23-24 December and in the morning of 24 December). In Romania we
start celebrations from 25th December and we prepare many dishes but with meat.
On the occasion
of Christmas, I wish you happiness, enjoy the moments near the loved ones and
share the gift of love with all people during your whole life!