CHRISTMAS AROUND THE WORLD
Christmas traditions and celebrations vary across the world and even now within countries we start to live in a multicultural, globalized world. Here at British Christmas Jumpers we designed and made a Christmas sweater which really represents the amazing diversity of so many different cultures, all coming together in unity to celebrate a festival of love and joy, no matter your background.
In this blog post I will briefly explain few of the varying Christmas celebrations around the world and how we chose to celebrate these in a Christmas sweater.
In 2015 this sweatshirt received an overwhelming abundance of support from all over the world. For some, the jumper stirred controversy with the assumption that Christmas should be left with Christ, but, for the most part people were extremely happy to celebrate diversity and this jumper was just a representation of that.
Egypt and Ethiopia
Christmas isn’t actually celebrated on the 25th but instead on the 7th of January. This is sometimes hard for some people to get their head around, the idea of Christmas simply moving! For the 43 days leading up to Christmas the Coptic Orthodox Christians partake in a unique fast consisting of a vegan only diet.
In Argentina the weather is warm and Christmas time and most of the celebrations take part on Christmas eve with the main meal being on Christmas eve afternoon and fireworks are let off at midnight to ‘toast’ Christmas day. Many also light globos to light up the Christmas eve sky. It is also common for them to stay awake all night celebrating and chatting and then sleeping all of the following day.
Christmas is relatively small in India compared with other parts of the world. With only 2.6% Christian in India you can understand how small the celebrations are here compared with 1 billion people who are not Christian. Midnight mass is very important at Christmas time in India and the whole family will walk to the mass which will be followed by a huge feast full of delicacies.
Christmas is a relatively new concept to Japan and has only been celebrated for the last couple of decades. It is not seen as a religious holiday and therefore people still have to go to work and tend to their day to activities. Fried chicken is often the food of choice on Christmas day and you can even place your order into KFC days and weeks in advance. For the Japanese Christmas is viewed as a way to spread happiness rather than a celebration of religion.
Christmas is widely celebrated in the Philippines with a mixture of western Christmas traditions and native Pilipino traditions. One of which is parol which is a bamboo pole with a lighted star or lantern on it. It is the most important decoration in their culture.
At British Christmas Jumpers we believe that Christmas should be a time of happiness, fun and giving, no matter what your religion or culture is.