Family Christmas Traditions Essay

Family Christmas Traditions Essay-11
Various factors contributed to the selection of December 25 as a date of celebration: it was the date of the winter solstice on the Roman calendar and it was about nine months after March 25, the date of the vernal equinox and a date linked to the conception of Jesus (now Annunciation).Jesus chose to be born on the shortest day of the year for symbolic reasons, according to an early Christmas sermon by Augustine: "Hence it is that He was born on the day which is the shortest in our earthly reckoning and from which subsequent days begin to increase in length.Associating it with drunkenness and other misbehavior, the Puritans banned Christmas during the Reformation.

Various factors contributed to the selection of December 25 as a date of celebration: it was the date of the winter solstice on the Roman calendar and it was about nine months after March 25, the date of the vernal equinox and a date linked to the conception of Jesus (now Annunciation).Jesus chose to be born on the shortest day of the year for symbolic reasons, according to an early Christmas sermon by Augustine: "Hence it is that He was born on the day which is the shortest in our earthly reckoning and from which subsequent days begin to increase in length.Associating it with drunkenness and other misbehavior, the Puritans banned Christmas during the Reformation.

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Angels proclaimed him a savior for all people, and shepherds came to adore him.

Matthew adds that the magi follow a star to Bethlehem to bring gifts to Jesus, born the king of the Jews.

However, some Eastern Christian Churches celebrate Christmas on December 25 of the older Julian calendar, which currently corresponds to a January date in the Gregorian calendar.

For Christians, the belief that God came into the world in the form of man to atone for the sins of humanity, rather than the exact birth date, is considered to be the primary purpose in celebrating Christmas.

Because gift-giving and many other aspects of the Christmas festival involve heightened economic activity, the holiday has become a significant event and a key sales period for retailers and businesses.

The economic impact of Christmas has grown steadily over the past few centuries in many regions of the world.Popular modern customs of the holiday include gift giving, completing an Advent calendar or Advent wreath, Christmas music and caroling, lighting a Christingle, viewing a Nativity play, an exchange of Christmas cards, church services, a special meal, pulling Christmas crackers and the display of various Christmas decorations, including Christmas trees, Christmas lights, nativity scenes, garlands, wreaths, mistletoe, and holly.In addition, several closely related and often interchangeable figures, known as Santa Claus, Father Christmas, Saint Nicholas, and Christkind, are associated with bringing gifts to children during the Christmas season and have their own body of traditions and lore.According to Steven Hijmans of the University of Alberta, "It is cosmic symbolism ...which inspired the Church leadership in Rome to elect the southern solstice, December 25, as the birthday of Christ, and the northern solstice as that of John the Baptist, supplemented by the equinoxes as their respective dates of conception." In modern times, March 25 is celebrated as Annunciation.Early Christians celebrated the life of Jesus on a date considered equivalent to 14 Nisan (Passover) on the local calendar.Because Passover was held on the 14th of the month, this feast is referred to as the Quartodecimal.He, therefore, who bent low and lifted us up chose the shortest day, yet the one whence light begins to increase." Linking Jesus to the Sun was supported by various Biblical passages.Jesus was considered to be the "Sun of righteousness" prophesied by Malachi: "Unto you shall the sun of righteousness arise, and healing is in his wings." Such solar symbolism could support more than one date of birth.All the major events of Christ's life, especially the passion, were celebrated on this date.In his letter to the Corinthians, Paul mentions Passover, presumably celebrated according to the local calendar in Corinth.

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