Christmas. Christmas is the time when Christians around the world celebrate the birth of Jesus.

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Christmas. Christmas is the time when Christians around the world celebrate the birth of Jesus.

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Every year in December we celebrate the birthday of Jesus Christ. That is why we call this time of year «Christmas» - we celebrate the “Mass”, or church service, for Chris. The word Christmas (or Christ’s Mass) comes from the Old English name Cristes Maesse – Christ’s Mass – and is the celebration of the birth of Jesus. The first recorded observance occurred in Rome in AD 360, but it wasn’t until AD 440, that the Christian Church fixed a celebration date of December 25. Christmas is a truly magical season, bringing families and friends together to share the mush loved customs and traditions which have been around for centuries. Most people are on holiday in England and stay at home with their family on Christmas day. Did you know?

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The addreviation for Christmas to Xmas is derived from the Greek alphabet. X is the letter Chi, which is the first letter of Christ’s name in the Greek alphabet. Christmas is celebrated on the 25th of December in England, with a Christmas dinner for the whole family. During the weeks before Chistmas Day, we send cards, watch nativity plays and go to carol services. We also decorate our homes and churches with green leaves, paper decorations and colourful electric lights. Many of our Christmas customs began long before Jesus was born.

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They came from earlier festivals which had nothing to do with the Christian church. Long time ago people had mid-winter festivals when the days were shortest and sunlight weakest. They believed that their ceremonies would give the sun back its power. The Romans, for example, help the festival of Saturnalia around 25 December. They decorated their homes with evergreens to remind them of Saturn, their harvest got, to return the following spring. Some of these customs and traditions were adopted by early Christians as part of their celebrations of Jesus’ birthday. In Victorian times some new ideas such as Father Christmas, Christmas cards and crackers were added to the celebrations.

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Santa comes at night when everyone is asleep. Santa’s reindeer can fly and take him from house to house. They land on the roofs of the houses and them Santa climbs down the chimney to leave the presents under the Christmas tree.

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