Christmas, the birth anniversary of Jesus Christ, is celebrated by Christians all over India with great fervor.
People decorate their houses, erect Christmas trees with branches hung with gifts and decorations, make cribs with figures of baby Jesus, Mother Mary, Joseph, the three kings who come to visit the baby and shepherd boys and their herds grazing around depicting the scenes of Jesus's Birth in the Bible. They decorate the Christmas tree, hang stars and illuminate them. The celebrations starts on 24th evening with carol singing and the Santa Claus visiting houses. There is a mid night mass followed by the pealing of the Church bells to usher in the day of Christmas. On the Christmas day, people enjoy a sumptuous Christmas lunch. Christmas cakes and wine are served to visitors and exchanged as gifts among friends and relatives.
Christmas celebrations vary in different parts of India. In some parts, small clay oil-burning lamps, mango leaves etc are used as Christmas decorations and mango and banana trees are decorated. All the major Indian cities wear a festive look. Shops and bazaars are decorated for the occasion and offer attractive bargains.
Carol singing, get-togethers and the exchanging of gifts enhance the Christmas spirit. Christmas parties launch off celebrations for the New year, thus retaining the festive mood for at least a week.
Festivals - All over India