The 24th of December witnessed some old- habits -that- don’t -ever- die
Though this year had an impact on the way so many rituals were followed there are some traditions that were kept despite it all; especially because it involved the birth of Jesus.
Let’s have a look at some of them:
– Midnight Mass
Midnight mass is the thing to do to herald in the birth of Lord Jesus. On Christmas Eve, the whole family attended hmidnight mass. Churches in India were adorned with Poinsettia flowers and candles for the midnight mass service. It was also broadcast live for those who could not make it to the church due to limited numbers.
– Pretty Me Up Parlour
A bee line for every grooming service available before getting decked up in Christmas outfits is traditionally followed. If there is only one day in the year one visits a salon – Christmas Eve is that day!
– A Midnight Feast
Toasting and wishing at home after mass with family and friends. Here, wine and rum-soaked plum cake plus some delectable pre – Christmas treats were on the menu. Mixed feelings and nostalgia tinged this tradition as due to the pandemic many loved ones could not make the trip home to be with family this Christmas. Also, the loved ones that lost their lives this year were sadly missed.
– Carol Singing
Yuletide hymns and carols were belted out in all voices before Midnight Mass. The choirs were on top of their game, in unison, almost like angels have come down from heaven, to sing for this sacrosanct mass.
– Tree, Lights, The Star, And More Carols…
In every home, chaos reigned as the final touches to the tree were completed. Strings of Christmassy lights adorned the area and a big beautifully lit up star hung outside the home or on the trees. Its significance correlates to the star which shone brightly above the stable at Bethlehem (the place of Christ’s birth); and beckoned the three Kings towards finding Jesus.
– Gift Giving (and Receiving!)
Most Christians exchange gifts after Midnight Mass and before Christmas Day itself. In fact, the whole season marks a time to visit each other at home, taste the assortment of sweets and exchange goodwill and gifts.
Besides these, there are traditions specific to families which are time-honoured through generations- and they were solemnly observed on Christmas Eve. Altogether, it was a quiet one – in keeping with a year that has called for much introspection and austerity.