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Christmas: A Short History

For many people around the world the Christmas season is a unique time of family, community, kindness, giving and caring. It is a celebration adorned with both Christian and secular tradition.

For Christians, Christmas honors the day they believe Jesus Christ was born. The Christian celebration of Christmas seems to have its origins in the Roman Empire of the 4th century. Most nations of Christian heritage celebrate Christmas on December 25. Some countries, descendent from the Eastern Roman Empire, commemorate Christmas on January 6.

Though Christmas is closely tied to the Nativity, many Christmas traditions have pre-Christian origins. Pagan winter festivals of the Celts, Germanic Tribes and Scandinavians have all contributed to the icons and pageantry of Christmas. Other more modern festivities held in chronological proximity to Christmas have also been co-opted in the celebration of Christmas.

History has made the winter holiday season a unique time of tradition and spirituality. However you celebrate this holiday season, we hope you enjoy this time and do what you can to make it a celebration of family, friends, community and environment.


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