December 25th might have also been chosen because the Winter Solstice and the ancient pagan Roman midwinter festivals called ‘Saturnalia’ and ‘Dies Natalis Solis Invicti’ took place in December around this date. Many people identify the Nativity Fast as the period of preparing to celebrate Jesus Christ’s birth. Today, the Russian, Jerusalem, Serbian, Georgian, and Polish Orthodox Churches live by the Julian calendar, as well as the monasteries on Mount Athos in Greece and the Orthodox and Greek … These commemorations were each given different dates and you can be sure there was a lot of debate about the dates. His birth date is unknown because there is little information about his early life. In countries historically shaped by Western Christianity (Roman Catholicism, Protestantism) these customs often involve gift giving, "king cakes" and a celebratory close to the Christmas season. ... Herod, the king of Judea, died in 4 BC. A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on the 25th December. After the Christmas Eve service in Greece, it is tradition to come home from church to break the fast. As a result these churches remain 13 days behind. Orthodox churches, unlike the Catholic Church, have no single Supreme Pontiff, or Bishop (see also: Pontifex maximus), and hold the belief that Christ is the … Privacy & Terms. Saint Nicholas Day, also called the Feast of Saint Nicholas, is observed on 6 December or on 5 December in Western Christian countries, and on 19 December in Eastern Christian countries using the old church Calendar.It is the feast day of Nicholas of Myra with particular regard to his reputation as a bringer of gifts.. Watch. In Christianity, the Nativity Fast is a period of abstinence and penance practiced by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Catholic Church in preparation for the Nativity of Jesus on December 25. A few Orthodox churches follow the revised Julian calendar but most Orthodox churches follow the more traditional Julian calendar, which has the original dates for Christian observances prior to the Gregorian calendar’s introduction. The January 7 celebration of Christmas Day is not a nationwide public holiday in countries such as Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom or the United States. In some cultures, the greenery and nativity scenes put up at Christmas are taken down at Epiphany. Christmas Day/ December 25, 2020 - Transfiguration of Our Savior Greek Orthodox Church of Florence, SC. Hong Kong); in others, Christian minorities or foreign cultural influences have led populations to observe the holiday. In traditionally Orthodoxnations, water, … Moreover, in all of the Orthodox countries, there are at least some Catholics and Greek Catholics, so some part of the population might have Christmas at the end of December in their families or communities. For example, they would say: “Mark was born during the reign of Tiberius” rather than on a particular date. Christmas Day is a public holiday on January 7 in countries such as Belarus, Egypt, Ethiopia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Russia, and Ukraine. Foods may include: Christmas Day, on the other hand, is a day for feasting and enjoying the company of friends and family members. Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ, who many Christians believe is the son of God. Many Christians celebrate Jesus’ birthday on December 25 but there are some who hold tradition by observing the date on January 7. Christmas celebrations in Greece officially last for 14 days, starting on Christmas Eve and ending on Epiphany (6 January) with the ‘Great Blessing of Water’. By 1923, there was a 13-day difference between the two calendars, putting Orthodox Christmas 13 days after December 25. Orthodox Christmas Day is an Orthodox holiday, celebrated annually on January 7. The day is a time of reflection, inner thoughts and healing in many eastern European countries. Most people measured their ages by making a connection to a historical event. By the end of the fourth century, most Church jurisdictions all over the known world had agreed to celebrate the nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ on 25 December. The Christmas dates around January 7 may vary among some churches. Cite this Article Format. Many Christian Orthodox churches in Australia celebrate Christmas in January instead of December 25. Why are there 12 months? Countries such as Japan, where Christmas is popular despite there being only a small number of Christians, have a… In the European countries of Germany and Poland, boys have … So, it was a time when people already celebrated things and it was good to give a Christian focus in that period of the year. White cloth is used on dinner tables in some countries to symbolize purity and the cloth that baby Jesus was wrapped in. Therefore, some Christians celebrate the birthday of Jesus Christ on the 25th. I was born and raised in a small village called Rentina in the rugged mountains of central Greece. The Greek orthadox Christmas is celebrated on the 25th of December. Lots of Orthodox Christians fast before January 7, and exclude meat and dairies from their meals. The 12 months of the year are linked to the Moon's orbit around Earth. Another theory is that the 25 December is exactly nine months from the Annunciation by Archangel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary that she would give birth to Christ. Many Orthodox Christians fast before January 7, usually excluding meat and dairy products. Some Orthodox countries - including Greece, Cyprus and Romania - adopted a revised Julian calendar in 1923, and now celebrate with us on December 25. Why do many countries set the clocks back and forth an hour twice a year? Orthodox Christians in Greece, Cyprus and Romania all celebrate on the 25 December as we do after adopting a revised version of the Julian calendar in 1923. Saint Nicholas, who is the patron saint of Russia, sailors and children, represents the kind, good, and giving spirit of Christmas. Epiphany is celebrated with a wide array of customs around the world. Some Orthodox Christians observe the Nativity and Adoration of the Shepherds (those who visited baby Jesus) on January 6, followed by the Adoration of the Magi (three wise men or kings) on January 7. Many Orthodox Christians fast before January 7, usually excluding meat and dairy products. One traditional Russian Christmas dish is baked goose with apples. Greek Orthodox Christmas. Following the Gregorian calendar, the Greek Orthodox Church celebrates Christmas on 25 December. It is important to remember that in the very first few years of the Church, the only feast days being celebrated were those to do with the death and resurrection of Christ: that is, Pascha. What do the month names mean? In return, fasting bef… Shows. “What is important to remember is that in essence, every Orthodox Church celebrates Christmas on December 25,” said Archimandrite Nathanael Symeonides of Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church of New York. Many Orthodox Christians annually celebrate Christmas Day on or near January 7 to remember Jesus Christ’s birth, described in the Christian Bible. How does the 12-hour clock system work? In other cultures these remain up until Candlemas on February 2. In some parts of Christendom the feast of Christmas was celebrated on 6 December, while in other parts it stayed on 6 January. The Julian calendar was revised in 1923 and this version is more in line with the Gregorian calendar. The Julian calendar was revised in 1923 and this version is more in line with the Gregorian calendar. While Christmas on January 7 is often called the “Orthodox Christmas,” almost half of the world’s Orthodox Christians celebrate Christmas on December 25, alongside with most of the world. Eventually the majority of Christian bishops agreed to celebrate on 25 December. It was also the time of the Jewish festival of lights called Hanukkah. Like most Greeks, I was raised in the Orthodox Church. Overview. The Greek Orthodox churches are descended from churches which the Apostles founded in the Balkans and the Middle East during the first century A.D., as well as maintenance of many ancient church traditions. Slow-cooked kidney beans with potatoes, garlic, and seasoning. The Greek Orthodox Church in Greece, Cyprus and Bulgaria adopted the Gregorian Calendar in 1923. The day is a time of reflection, inner thoughts and healing in many eastern European countries. Christmas January 7 is also known as the Old Christmas. 25 December. As a result, the Eastern Orthodox Christians were separated from the Western Catholic and Protestant Christians, since the Easterners celebrate Christmas on January 7th, and the Westerners celebrate it on December 25. Christmas is still on December 25 in the Julian calendar so the January 7 date is only valid between 1901 and 2100 The Gregorian date for Orthodox Christmas will be January 8 in 2101 if the Julian calendar is still used. let us see where Christ was born! From now on, most of the liturgical hymns in Greek Orthodox … The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, with its headquarters located in the City of New York, ... Nativity of Christ (December 25) / Christmas Message to the faithful (12/25/2000) "Come, O faithful. The Christmas dates around January 7 may vary among some churches. Greek Orthodox faithful observe four main fasting periods and many individual fast days according to a calendar based on the date of Pascha ... (Christmas) December 25 * Theotokos: Mary, Mother of God ** Theophany: Epiphany Learn About Greek Orthodox Great Lent Traditions. greek orthodox christmas 2017, eastern orthodox christmas, greek orthodox church christmas day, greek orthodox church christmas, russian orthodox christmas, eastern orthodox christmas 2020, greek orthodox christmas dates, greek orthodox christmas 2019 All Requirements Good knowledge will probably experienced attorney specialist Practice will devote some water are … This means that churches still on the Julian calendar celebrate Christmas on 6 January and they celebrate Epiphany on 19 January, Source: Lychnos December 2016 / January 2017, © 2020 Greek Orthodox Christian Society | Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia |. Christmas on January 7 is also known as Old Christmas Day. Some countries, such as Armenia, observe Christmas Day on January 6. One theory is that 25 December was chosen to Christianise the pagan festival which some Christians were still celebrating, even as late as the 4th Century. © Time and Date AS 1995–2021. The actual date of the birth of Jesus Christ is unknown. Greek Orthodox Christmas Day You must have heard About the greek orthodox Christians who celebrate Christmas on 25 th of December every year. At the end of the 3rd century, many Churches celebrated it in the winter, and this was only accepted in Rome in the middle of the 4th century. Together with the Magi, the Kings of the East. Some Orthodox Christians visit a church to pray or reflect on inner thoughts in the lead up to the Orthodox Christmas Day. The earliest known indication of a celebration of Christmas comes in a passing statement by St Clement of Alexandria who mentions that the Egyptians of his time celebrated the Lord’s birth on 20 May. That explains the existence … So, take it easy … Many Orthodox churches recognize the holiday dates according to the Julian calendar. Foods may include: 1. Around the 1920s the Orthodox Churches around the world decided to move from the Julian Calendar to the Gregorian Calendar, because the Julian Calendar was mathematically flawed and was thirteen days behind. Eleven days were dropped to make up for the calendar discrepancy that accumulated with Julian calendar when England and Scotland switched from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar in 1752. Orthodox Christians in central and eastern Europe and other parts of the world celebrate Christmas on January 7. For example, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church and Russian Orthodox Church celebrate Christmas Day on January 7, while the The difference in these dates lies in the history of how these dates came about in the first place. Church liturgies on Orthodox Christmas Eve (January 6) may be longer than usual but many people find them inspiring. This festival was the “birthday of the unconquered sun” which was a celebration of the sun god at the time of the winter solstice. In those days, birthdays were not recorded, nor were they considered important. However, as soon as December arrives, festivities begin: homes are decorated, and the smell of Christmas treats is in the air. The type of food and activity may vary depending on the country’s culture and traditions. In some non-Christian areas, periods of former colonial rule introduced the celebration (e.g. In some Orthodox Christian cultures, people walk in procession to seas, rivers and lakes as part of the liturgy on the Orthodox Christmas Day. The Christmas meal usually includes meat and different types of pastries. Vegetables and herbs such as potatoes, peas, and garlic. Is midnight 12 am or 12 pm? So the birth date of Jesus was most probably never recorded. The February Full Moon is named after the snow on the ground. You might be a wonder to know when you heard about Christmas on 7 th January. Orthodox Christians in central and eastern Europe and other parts of the world celebrate Christmas on January 7. They make holes in the ice to bless the water if it is frozen. The Gospel of St Matthew in the Bible claims he was born during Herod the Great’s reign. There are several theories surrounding the question as to why 25 December was chosen as the day to celebrate the nativity of our Lord. Christmas is still on December 25 in the Julian calendar so the January 7 date is only valid between 1901 and 2100 The Gregorian date for Orthodox Christmas will be January 8 in 2101 if the Julian calendar is still used. Many people, especially in rural areas, did not accept the loss of these 11 days and preferred to use the Julian calendar. For example, in Greece, Bulgaria, Cyprus, and Romania, Christmas celebrations are held on the 25th of December. After a few decades the Church desired to also celebrate the Epiphany of our Lord on 6 January. December 25 in the Gregorian calendar is a bank holiday, … If the Church was to celebrate Christmas, they would have to select a date. Herod, who was a king of Judaea, died in 4 BCE. Some Orthodox countries – such as Greece, Cyprus and Romania – now use 25 December as they changed calendars. Interestingly, the Armenian Orthodox Church, which broke away from the Universal Church in the fourth century and thus did not change its practice of celebrating Christmas, still celebrates Epiphany as a combined commemoration of the birth and baptism of Christ, just as the Church did in the 2nd – 3rd century. Little importance is given to gift exchanges and the commercialized Christmas. This meant celebrating the fact that God took on human form and visited us: “God is the Lord and has revealed Himself to us!” Later the Church decided to break up the Epiphany feast into its components: the birth, baptism, the circumcision and the entering into the temple. Candles may be lit to represent the light of Christ and the festive Christmas meal represents the end of fasting. Most Orthodox Christians for example, celebrate Christmas on January 7th as opposed to December 25th – today namely being the Coptic Orthodox Church (in Egypt) and the Russian Orthodox Church. This date works to the Julian calendar that pre-dates the Gregorian calendar, which is commonly observed. Some Native American tribes named this the Hunger Moon, others called it the Storm Moon. Straw may be placed on these tables to symbolize the simplicity of the place where Jesus was born. When the calendar change was made, some jurisdictions such as Moscow, Serbia and Mount Athos, were given the blessing to stay on the “Old Calendar”. Shellfish may be allowed even on days that exempt fish except for these. By the end of the fourth century, most Church jurisdictions all over the known world had agreed to celebrate the nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ on 25 December. Fish, wine and oil are allowed on November 16, November 30, December 4, 6, 12, and 20. Public Life. Symeonides explained that “the one feast day that is celebrated on the same day by all Orthodox Christians is Pascha,” or Easter. In the first century the Church did not celebrate the birth of Christ. We celebrated Christmas on December 25 th with many of the common western activities and family gatherings. No date is given in the Bible, only some hints according to certain historical events that happened at that time. It is believed that fasting helps people shift their focus from themselves to others, spending less time worrying about food and using more time in increased prayer and caring for the poor. The Orthodox in Jerusalem also celebrate Christmas according to the … Lenten bread… Why Do We Celebrate Christmas on 25 December? Home. No fish may be consumed from December 20-24, and hymns are sung during this time. Live. Christmas December 25 Contemplating the Icon of the Nativity Christmas... Xmas Learn about this feast day (in English): Learn about this feast day (in Greek): Related links: Anthony M Coniaris, Daily Meditations and Prayers for Christmas Advent Fast and Epiphany (Orthodox Many Orthodox Christians in countries such as the United States fast before Christmas Day. Orthodox Christians who use the older version of the Julian calendar, celebrate this occasion on December 25 in the older calendar, which is January 7 in the Gregorian calendar. Pages Non-Business Places Religious Place of Worship Church Eastern Orthodox Church St. Katherine Greek Orthodox Church Videos Thursday December 25, 2020 Christmas Liturgy Around the 1920s the Orthodox Churches around the world decided to move from the Julian Calendar to the Gregorian Calendar, because the Julian Calendar was mathematically flawed and was thirteen days behind. The corresponding Western season of preparation for Christmas, which also has been called the Nativity Fast and St. Martin's Lent, has taken the name of Advent.The Eastern … The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336AD, during the time of the Emperor Constantine (306-337). 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