Jump to content

What is Orthodox Christmas and why is it on January 7?


Rob Thompson
 Share

Recommended Posts

What is Orthodox Christmas and why is it on January 7?

Source - Metro News
By -Jack Slater

Date 07-01-23

GettyImages-1454581690.jpg?quality=90&st
Merry Christmas… again!

If you’ve just taken down your decorations for Twelfth Night and were actually looking forward to getting back to some normalcy, we’re sorry to say Christmas is back. Sort of.

Some countries will be observing Orthodox Christmas today, January 7.…
Many Orthodox Christians annually celebrate Christmas Day on or near January 7 to remember Jesus Christ’s birth, described in the Christian Bible.

The discrepancy in dates is all to do with which calendar countries around the world follow.

In Great Britain, we follow the new Gregorian calendar but some countries still follow the old Julian calendar, created by Julius Caesar in 35AD, for religious festivals.

The Julian calendar miscalculated the length of a solar year, creating an 11-minute discrepancy each year, which built up over time and caused it to fall out of sync.

However, while the Gregorian calendar replaced the Julian calendar many countries retained the historic Julian calendar dates to mark certain religious festivals including Christmas.

Which countries celebrate Orthodox Christmas?
There are 16 countries around the world that mark Christmas Day in January.

Many of these are in the Soviet bloc, the Middle East and parts of Europe.

They include:

Russia
Ethiopia
Greece
Serbia
Eritrea
Egypt
Israel
Macedonia
Montenegro
Moldova
Ukraine
Belarus
Georgia
Kazakhstan
Romania
Bulgaria.

Christmas is not only celebrated on a different day in these countries but it is also celebrated in different ways.

In Serbia the day is spent hunting for an oak branch to be burned during Christmas dinner. Meanwhile in Belarus people eat pancakes and fish on a table of straw and in Montenegro a loaf of bread with a coin inside is broken during dinner with the person receiving the coin gaining good luck.
Those in Russia eat 12 courses – including beetroot soup, fish and stuffed cabbage – on Christmas Eve to pay tribute to the 12 apostles while in Kazakhstan there is a midnight liturgy at the cathedral in Almaty.

People in Macedonia chop an oak log into three pieces on Christmas Eve to represent the Holy Trinity and in Ethiopia males play a game called ganna with a curved stick and wooden ball and eat a spicy meat stew called ‘wat’.

A goat is usually slaughtered and eaten in Eritrea while christians in Egypt feast on meat, eggs and butter on Christmas Eve after a long fast beforehand from November 25. A pig is slaughtered as a Christmas meal in Romania.

And in Greece a sprig of basil is wrapped around a cross an placed in water while other countries celebrate Christmas in a similar way to Britain with a Christmas tree and blessings.

  • Like 5
  • Love 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Didn't realize so many of my neighbors followed this tradition, I just thought they were too lazy to turn off their lights.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Actually, this is great information. The more we learn about other customs and traditions, the better we are able to present ourselves as gift givers. Thanks for posting.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Definitely Gus there are lots more really informative posts on CN I still havent managed to them all :))

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

🎄 COUNTDOWN TO CHRISTMAS

  • Days
  • Hours
  • Minutes
  • Seconds

  • Donations

    All donations go directly towards the cost of hosting and running ClausNet!

    Your support, through donations or simply by clicking on sponsor links, is greatly appreciated!

    Donate Sidebar by DevFuse
  • Our picks

    • How do You Portray Santa?
      Portraying Santa is acting; it is a characterization of a mythical character.

      Most of us never think of ourselves as actors, but we are. Certain characteristics of Santa Claus have been handed down from one generation to another. The way we dress and conduct ourselves all follow an established pattern.

      Santa Claus is one of the most recognizable characters throughout the world. This came about from the advertising campaign of the Coke Cola Company and the creative painting genius, of Haddon Sundblom. Coke Cola was looking to increase winter sales of its soft drink and hired Sundblom to produce illustrations for prominent magazines. These illustrations appeared during the holiday season from the late 1930s into the early 1970s and set the standard for how Santa should look.

      This characterization of Santa with rosy cheeks, a white beard, handlebar mustache plus a red costume trimmed in white fur is the image most everyone has in their minds. Unconsciously people are going to judge you against that image. If your beard isn’t white or you have a soiled suit it will register with the onlooker.

      By the way, the majority of Sundblom's paintings depict Santa with a Brown Belt and Brown Boots. Not until his later illustrations did he change the color to Black for these items. Within the past few years many costume companies have offered the Coke Cola Suit and it has become very popular. You can tell it by the large buttons and absence of fur down the front of the jacket.

      No matter how you portray Santa, be it home visits, schools, churches, parades, corporate events, malls, hospitals we all make an entrance and an impression! The initial impression we make determines if our client will ask us to return.

      The 5 Second Rule

      I have a theory: When you enter the presence of your audience you have about 5 seconds to make people believe you are the real Santa.
        • Thanks
        • Love
        • Like
      • 14 replies
    • If You Have the Post Christmas Blues You’re Doing Christmas Wrong
      The post-Christmas blues are a very real thing. Once the date of December 25th has passed the specter of December 26th is an ominous marker to many. It sits there on the calendar like the Ghost of Christmas Yet-to-Come. Silent and foreboding, the very image of the hooded Angel of Death it seems to be. And why not?

      Just about anywhere you look Americans are tossing trees to the curb, ripping down lights from rooftops and radio stations are flipping back to everyday music. What took months to build gets deconstructed in a matter of a couple of days.
        • Love
        • Like
      • 30 replies
    • Not Everyone Can Be Santa!
      Yes, I said it and it is not meant to hurt anyone’s feelings. I do view many Facebook sites along with websites and posted photos. Frankly, many of these postings should have never been put on public display.
        • Thanks
        • Love
        • Like
      • 9 replies
    • Auld Lang Syne
      Every New Year’s Eve at the stroke of midnight, millions around the world traditionally gather together to sing the same song, “Auld Lang Syne”. As revilers mumble though the song’s versus, it often brings many of them to tears – regardless of the fact that most don’t know or even understand the lyrics. Confusion over the song’s lyrics is almost as much of a tradition as the song itself. Of course that rarely stops anyone from joining in.
        • Wow
        • Thanks
        • Love
        • Like
      • 4 replies
    • Merry Christmas, My Friend
      Every year around this time, some variation of this poem is circulated online. The poem is generally credited to “a soldier stationed in Okinawa” or more recently since September 11, 2001, “a Marine stationed in Afghanistan”.

      However, the poem’s true author is Lance Corporal James M. Schmidt.

      Originally entitled, “Merry Christmas, My Friend”, Corporal Schmidt wrote the poem in 1986 while serving as Battalion Counter Sniper at the Marine Barracks 8th & I, in Washington, D.C.

      That day the poem was placed in the Marine Corps Gazette and distributed worldwide. Schmidt’s poem was later published in Leatherneck (Magazine of the Marines) in December 1991.
        • Sad
        • Love
        • Like
      • 1 reply
×
×
  • Create New...