It’s always a meaningful time of year; one spent in thanks for our many blessings, one surrounded with family and friends, the best foods and dishes, and beautiful messages of giving. This year, since we have Hapari fans all over the worlds, we thought it would be fun to explore the different Christmas celebrations held around the globe. We hope these stories of tradition and culture inspire you to reflect on your own holiday customs!
Read on to for little snippets on how different cultures and countries celebrate the season.
For Australians, Christmas falls in the height of their summer heat. As such, many Australians celebrate December 25th with outdoor excursions like trips to the beach, pool parties and bon fires. One popular event of the season is called the Carols by Candlelight. Communities gather to sing Christmas carols outside together on Christmas evening. Late in the day, the Queen’s Christmas message is also broadcast on public televisions throughout Australia, wishing the people and the country a happy holiday.
China has a relatively small amount of Christians celebrating Christmas in the country. However, the ones who do celebrate Sheng Dan Jieh which means the Holy Birth Festival. Families decorate their homes with Christmas trees, red lanterns, and brightly colored paper chains. On Christmas day many Christian communities celebrate with fireworks and community parties.
For Mexicans, Christmas is an extended celebration with festivities happening from December 12th to January 6th. The community celebrates with ‘Posadas,’ symbolizing the inn in which Mary and Joseph looked for a room during Christ’s birth. They decorate their houses with evergreens, moss, and paper lanterns. There are often big family dinners with pinatas filled with candy.
A celebrated tradition in the Netherlands, Christmas is a time for family and presents! The Netherlands actually celebrates twice in December – once on December 5th and once on December 25th. The 5th symbolizes the coming of ‘Sinterklaas’ a figure similar to Santa Claus in Western culture. On this night, children put out clogs or shoes by the windows or fireplaces in hopes of finding them filled with toys in the morning. They also celebrate Dec. 25th with toys and festivities.
Like in Australia, Christmas in South Africa falls in the heat of the summer. Because of it’s history with the UK, South Africa celebrates Christmas similarly to European countries. They sing carols, put up Christmas trees, hang lights from their houses, etc. One notable difference is the dinners served on Christmas Day. Many South Africans serve Malva Pudding, a dish native to the area.
We hope this glimpse of Christmas around the world helps ring in the holiday spirit for you and your family! At Hapari, we’re so thankful for each and every one of you in our community. Thank you for supporting us! We wish you all a very Merry Christmas!