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Published by: kamolpan@gmail.com on Oct 16, 2008
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Traditions Around the World

Created by St. Catherine of Siena

Our World

United States of America

Christmas, which celebrates the birth of Christ, is the most widely observed holiday in the United States. Nativity sets display images of Baby Jesus, Mary and Joseph. Christmas is celebrated on December 25th. Santa Claus visits children on Christmas Eve and brings them gifts. People join with family and friends, share meals, and give presents to one another.

Merry Christmas


Shinnen omedeto

Christmas is a relatively new nonreligious holiday, celebrated mainly in the cities of Japan. It is devoted mainly to the pleasure of children. Trees are decorated with small toys and origami. Japanese children exchange origami “birds of peace” as a pledge that war must not happen again. Santa is called “Kurohsu” and it is believed he has eyes in the back of his head so he can watch children all year long.


Christmas is the most important holiday in Colombia. People decorate Christmas trees and display nativity scenes. Families get together, eat, dance and exchange gifts on Christmas Eve. Baby Jesus brings presents to the children. Colombians prepare special dishes. Some serve turkey, chicken or any typical food from the region.

Feliz Navidad


God Jul Och Gott Nytt Ar!

In Sweden, they celebrate St. Lucia’s Day on December 13. The oldest daughter wears a white robe, red sash, and a crown of lighted candles. She serves coffee and cakes to her family. The Swedish Santa is a little elflike person named “Jultomten,” who delivers gifts on Christmas Eve. Favorite Christmas foods are lutefish, a boiled cod, and kringle, a Christmas sweet.


Pozdrevly Ayu Sprazdnikom Rozhdestva Khristova Is Novim Godom!

Christmas is not officially recognized in Russia, but the Russian Winter Festival is celebrated for twelve days between December 25 and January 5. Decorated evergreens are called New Year’s Trees. Grandfather Frost and his helper, Snow Girl, deliver gifts on New Year’s Eve. Russians often serve a twelve-course supper, one course for each of the twelve apostles.

1. What day is Christmas celebrated in the United States? 2. In Colombia, who brings gifts to the children? 3. What does Santa have on the back of his head in Japan? 4. What is Santa’s name in Russia? 5. In Sweden, what does the oldest daughter wear on her head?

Enrichment Activity
Choose a country and find four facts regarding the Christmas traditions practiced in that local..e.

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