Christmas: what traditions distinguish it from the Orthodox

Today it is noted mostly adherents of the Catholic religion, as Christmas is one of the main Christian holidays, established in honor of the birth in the flesh of Jesus Christ by the virgin Mary. Of course, in many ways, this holiday is not too different from the Christmas Orthodox, but some features of it still exist.


The difference in the dates of the celebration of Christmas due to the fact that many of the Catholic Church switched to the Gregorian calendar, while the Russian Orthodox Church (Georgian, Jerusalem and Serbian Orthodox Churches) continue to adhere to the Julian calendar.

Perhaps one of the most notable features of Christmas is the fact that in some countries — in particular, in the USA this holiday is celebrated more widely than the New year, even people who do not consider themselves to Christianity. Moreover, Christmas in such countries is perceived as more of a family holiday than as a religious, and in this respect also resembles the New year in Russia. This is probably not least due to the fact that, unlike the Orthodox Christmas, Catholic comes before the New year.

In Orthodoxy it is the one Christmas service, which lasts until the morning, and which combines Great Compline, Matins and Liturgy. Catholics are three separate mass – night, morning and afternoon.

It is also believed that in the Catholic tradition, Christmas is considered more important holiday than Easter, while in it the Orthodox Easter is the main religious holiday of the year.

Another feature of Christmas can be considered some of the traditional dishes, the most popular of which is the goose with apples.

It should be noted that not all Orthodox Christians in the world celebrate Christmas in January, and not all representatives of Catholicism in December. In particular, many Catholics of the Eastern rite (in particular, the Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church) celebrate Christmas on the night of 6 to 7 January, and local churches who use the revised Julian calendar — in the night from 24 to 25 December. The revised Julian calendar is a modification of the Julian calendar, developed by the Serbian astronomer, Professor of mathematics and celestial mechanics at the Belgrade University by Milutin Milankovitch. In the next century, he would be in line with the Gregorian for a single day.

A recent survey conducted in the USA showed that, on average, every American is willing to spend on Christmas gifts for 862 dollars, that is more than 50 thousand rubles. In Russia on Christmas gifts people on average provide about 3 200 rubles.

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