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Christmas: A day for love and happiness

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Added 26th December 2018 11:26 AM

Since we celebrate the greatest gift of incarnation, which happened in a family of Joseph and Mary, then Christmas can best be celebrated as a family.

Christmas: A day for love and happiness

Fr. Jacinto Kibuuka

Since we celebrate the greatest gift of incarnation, which happened in a family of Joseph and Mary, then Christmas can best be celebrated as a family.

By Fr. Jacinto Kibuuka

Christmas is one of those holidays that just seem to be filled with cheer and wonder.  It is a day for fun, love, and happiness, rejoicing getting together as families.  Spend time quietly being thankful for the gift of Jesus to the world that we celebrate on Christmas.

This is the day that Christians have set aside to celebrate the beginning of the greatest gift mankind has ever received. Coming into the Christmas season with a grateful heart is essential if you really want to make the extension from Jesus's giving of His amazing gift to your giving and receiving.

Since we celebrate the greatest gift of incarnation, which happened in a family of Joseph and Mary, then Christmas can best be celebrated as a family.

Decorate your house for Christmas. Put Christmas lights on your house. If you know that someone special is coming over in your lives, hang a homemade wreath on your door

Decorate a Christmas tree. Go with your family to your local Christmas tree farm to cut your own   tree that fits your house. After you've gotten your tree situated, wrap it in lights and begin hanging the ornaments. Don't forget to water it occasionally and safeguard it from pets! You can decorate your tree with family heirloom ornaments or try something new by decorating a tree with Star Trek or Christmas card.  Be as creative or traditional as you like.

Join up with friends and family for a dinner. For many people, Christmas is about gathering with friends and family to enjoy each other's company and celebrate the Birth of the Redeemer.   Take advantage of this time to reconnect with friends and family. Create your own traditions or celebrate with the traditions that have been passed down in your family. You can ably invite your friends or family over for Christmas dinner.

The important thing is just to get together with people you love and make a traditional Christmas dinner complete with roast turkey, or pork, or create your own traditions by branching out and making whatever you want!

Go for Christmas caroling; either have it at your home, or go door to door, or go to an old folks' home and do it. Learn some Christmas or seasonal songs, and sing! It's fun, and even if your voice isn't great, hopefully, you won't be singing alone. If you can't go caroling for some reason, blast Christmas music throughout your house

For song ideas, try songs like   "Holly Jolly Christmas," "Silver Bells," Jingle Bells," "The Little Drummer Boy," "Let it Snow," or "It's Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas," etc.

For children, let them watch Christmas movies. Have a movie night during which you invite friends or family over and serve popcorn or biscuits and cookies. Play Christmas movies like "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," "It's a Wonderful Life," "A Christmas Story", "Santa's Apprentice" or any number of other seasonal movies.

  vangelic rthodox atholic  church atriarch erold liege chats with ishop ibuuka as they entered for liturgy on unday Evangelic Orthodox Catholic (EOC) church Patriarch Jerold Gliege chats with Bishop Kibuuka as they entered for liturgy on Sunday

Do a generous act; the Alms giving. This is in the spirit of spreading joy, kindness, beauty and love during the Christmas season. Whether to your family and friends, or to others less fortunate, spend something this Christmas in giving. We give in remembrance of the gifts of the Magi to the Savior, but at the very heart of it all, recall that we are to give because He first gave to us.

You can volunteer at a homeless shelter, buy some vintage decorations at or donate some of your unwanted decorations, drop spare change into the local charity drive bucket. Share your dinner with the hungry and needy. Choose some activities that you and your friends or family will enjoy and which fit with the meaning of Christmas. Consider preparing some special foods for the poor and needy, visiting people who live alone or have no family close or dropping in to see the sick in the hospital. You might even give handmade gifts to people who aren't likely to get much this season.

Consider giving gifts wrapped in lovely wrapping paper. You don't have to spend big bucks on gifts--small tokens are fine. Some families enjoy giving gifts to one another to show their appreciation for one another. You can buy gifts or make them yourself. Learn how to become an expert gift wrapper here. Gather around the Christmas tree with your family on Christmas morning and exchange gifts. Or, sit by the fire with your loved one and enjoy Christmas together.

You can do something fun with your family outdoors. There's nothing as fun to do on a Christmas night than to walk or drive around town and neighborhood looking at local decorations. Head down to the beach or the local park. It's always great to get out of the house and breathe in the fresh air.

Celebrating a religious Christmas

Reflect on the reason for Christmas. In the Bible, you can find the Christmas story in the Gospel according to Luke, Chapters 1 and 2, as well as the Gospel according to Matthew Chapters 1 and 2. Consider reading these chapters aloud as part of your family's holiday. Ask members of the family for their own impressions of the stories given, to personalize their understanding. Talk to children about the meaning of Christmas and tell them the stories about Christmas. Find beautiful illustrations to accompany the Bible stories to capture their interest. 

Frankincense and Myrrh oils can be purchased in many herb, candle or floral shops and used as fragrance instead of traditional holiday scents.

Invite God to come and celebrate the day with you. Some people choose to do this by attending a Christmas Eve service. Some do it by sitting before the Christmas tree and silently inviting God to just be with them. Prayer is also helpful. So, a Christian must attend a service for Evangelical Orthodox, Divine Liturgy is absolutely important. However, you decide to do it, for the Christian, making God a part of you in this season is very vital. Gather together at the homes of friends and family, and spend some time in fellowship with others who believe as you do during this special time.

Christmas celebrations generally last two or three days, depending on when your Christmas partying will be done. However, most of the Christmas spirit will be spent from December 16th until a few days following January 1.

The writer is the Bishop of the Antiochian Eastern Orthodox Church (EOC)

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