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С Рождеством!

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I don't understand this holiday in Russia. Is it merely a religious observation, or do people also exchange gifts on Orthodox Christmas as they do on New Year's? Congratulations to those who celebrate! I'm not sure how the Orthodox church observes Christmas day, or if it varies from the Christian rituals in the USA and Europe on 25 December, but I hope everyone has a festive day! Cheers from the USA! :) Please share Orthodox Christmas traditions in comments. I'm not religious and don't observe these holy days, but is interesting to learn about cultural distinctions for celebration.

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( 146 comments — Leave a comment )
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pro100_petrov
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:44 pm (UTC)
Positively, this holiday is completely religious in Russia. But nevertheless, thank you for your congratulation.
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:49 pm (UTC)
So for people who aren't religious, this is just an ordinary day? I guess they must also appreciate the holiday because it's a free day off from work. :)
(no subject) - pro100_petrov - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
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(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:04 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pro100_petrov - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:06 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - kichiro_sora - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 05:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - kichiro_sora - Jan. 7th, 2016 07:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 08:31 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - kichiro_sora - Jan. 7th, 2016 08:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
!!! - shkadov64 - Jan. 12th, 2016 06:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: !!! - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 12th, 2016 06:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: !!! - shkadov64 - Jan. 12th, 2016 06:29 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - theodorexxx - Jan. 7th, 2016 06:22 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 06:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - baby_rhino - Jan. 7th, 2016 07:03 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 08:29 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - baby_rhino - Jan. 7th, 2016 08:40 pm (UTC) - Expand
dorli87
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:45 pm (UTC)
Thank you! We dont make gifts in those days.
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:49 pm (UTC)
You're welcome. I saw some of my Russian friends on Facebook posting photos of gifts this morning, so I got confused. But perhaps everyone has different family traditions.
(no subject) - dorli87 - Jan. 7th, 2016 02:55 pm (UTC) - Expand
tropical_degree
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:50 pm (UTC)
Since Old New Year is on 14 Th January, 6 of January was always Russian Christmas.


Edited at 2016-01-07 02:50 pm (UTC)
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:53 pm (UTC)
Yes, I read about the significance of the day this morning because I couldn't remember why the Orthodox celebrate on 7 January. Now I remember. :)
white_walker
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:51 pm (UTC)
For me and many my friends there's not anything special about this day.
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:52 pm (UTC)
This is a big cultural distinction, because in the U.S. Christmas is observed by both the religious and unbelievers. It has become a secular holiday in many ways, so that everyone can enjoy it.
(no subject) - creamy_mood - Jan. 7th, 2016 04:02 pm (UTC) - Expand
masha_shamraeva
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:52 pm (UTC)
It's an important holiday for religious people. Earlier I congratulated my religious grandmother and grandfather. Now for me it's just a day, when institutions do not work.
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:54 pm (UTC)
So how do your grandparents celebrate? Just go to church services? Btw, I'm always amazed there are no chairs or benches in Orthodox churches, and that people stand for the entire service.
(no subject) - kichiro_sora - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:50 pm (UTC) - Expand
bratyk
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:55 pm (UTC)
Для большинства россиян - это обычный выходной из десяти ни кому не нужных нерабочих дней в начале января. Только небольшой процент православных посещают церковь.
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 02:57 pm (UTC)
It's nice to have so many days off! I'm envious. :)
(no subject) - bratyk - Jan. 7th, 2016 02:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bratyk - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:04 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bratyk - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:15 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bratyk - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:44 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bratyk - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:47 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - baby_rhino - Jan. 7th, 2016 07:11 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bratyk - Jan. 7th, 2016 07:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - theodorexxx - Jan. 7th, 2016 06:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - baby_rhino - Jan. 7th, 2016 07:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
worobioff_ku
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:00 pm (UTC)
Шеннон! С Рождеством Христовым, поздравляю Вас!Желаю крепкого сибирского здоровья,море любви и финансов!В подарок старинная русская меднолитая икона "Рождество Христово"!

Edited at 2016-01-07 03:03 pm (UTC)
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:09 pm (UTC)
Thanks! :) But my Christmas celebration is over. My family observes Christmas on 25 December, and today I'm sitting at my desk at work, doing legal work. :)
(no subject) - worobioff_ku - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
vladibo666
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:00 pm (UTC)
Obviously, it is religious, I never seen gift exchanges on this day. But nevertheless, almost everybody (religious or not) participate - we don't want to miss a party opportunity. Dates difference in celebrating is due to the church changes from Julian to Gregorian calendar. However some orthodox confessions (russian, armenian, 5 or 6) never changed old dates to the new ones for the holiday observations. That is exactly shift in 14 days.
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:08 pm (UTC)
Okay! Have fun at your secular party. :)
pin_gwin
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:07 pm (UTC)
I did not mention it, I have nothing to do with it. It is a religious date, not like big sales marathon finish in the US. Seriously, New Year is way better to celebrate for any faithful of faithless people. United we stand.
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:10 pm (UTC)
So what day does your family celebrate and exchange gifts in the USA? On 25 December or New Year's? Because your children have grown up in Minnesota, right?
(no subject) - pin_gwin - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:26 pm (UTC) - Expand
elena_88888
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:10 pm (UTC)
Hi, Shannon,
Thanks for congratulations!

I'm not so religious as to follow all the attributes and especially I'm very unsatisfied as for institution of church. Recent years most of all. I just have faith, I trust in God and just avoid another way of charging me off...

Here we have quite difficult situation with prices in complex with quality so I make big purchases mostly online so it's quite difficult to keep in secret. So New-Year, Christmas and other 363/364 days a year we can present each other with quite small gifts

And a picture for you - how people celebrate Christmas in Russia...



Edited at 2016-01-07 03:14 pm (UTC)
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:17 pm (UTC)
It is always good to have faith and hope in something, otherwise life becomes very dark and meaningless. Where does Putin attend church services? In Moscow, or some provincial area?
(no subject) - elena_88888 - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bratyk - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - elena_88888 - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
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lastochkanata
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:14 pm (UTC)
Christmas at us - not only a holiday religious though in a basis the religious tradition lays.. The Majority of those who celebrates it, do not go to this day in church though can consider itself as believing people. In our family it is accepted to mark it, and we love it even more, than New year. Christmas - a holiday more silent and family. More magic. More sincere... Gifts to give really this day it is especially not accepted, as all is already presented in New year:).
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:17 pm (UTC)
Enjoy! I hope you and your family have a wonderful day! :)
(no subject) - lastochkanata - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
mat_uc
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:14 pm (UTC)
We have 10 drinking days this winter.

Fucking crisis. No Alpes, no France and no Austria :(
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:18 pm (UTC)
In other years you usually traveled during the long holiday? I feel bad for my Russian friends, who are not in a very difficult position due to the weakened ruble. Meanwhile, the dollar is very strong and it is a good time for Americans to travel. Life is unfair. :(
andrey_kaminsky
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:16 pm (UTC)
yahoo!!!!
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:19 pm (UTC)
I don't envision you as a holy man. And what do you do on this day? Look at porn online? :))
(no subject) - andrey_kaminsky - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:30 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - andrey_kaminsky - Jan. 7th, 2016 04:50 pm (UTC) - Expand
al_lex_ey
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:36 pm (UTC)
-I don't understand this holiday in Russia.
- It is Christmas. What is so strange?

-Is it merely a religious observation,
- Yes

-or do people also exchange gifts on Orthodox Christmas as they do on New Year's?
-Yes too.

Do you visit Church on Christmas eve? Many Russians do.
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:38 pm (UTC)
For me, it's a big difference in the way Russians and Americans celebrate Christmas. In the U.S., Christmas is celebrated by all, even atheists. :)) It is both a secular and religious holiday. No, I don't attend church on any day of the year. I'm agnostic.
(no subject) - onkel_hans - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:45 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - theodorexxx - Jan. 7th, 2016 06:26 pm (UTC) - Expand
ilay_original
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:44 pm (UTC)
Some people do celebrate (not many) but for the most it's just a cause to exchange warm wishes once again.
And proof of surviving wild new year celebration - for some of us :)

Probably this was the reason me and my friends were posting vintage postcards on facebook this night and exchanged with sms texts. Though none of us is at all religious.
peacetraveler22
Jan. 7th, 2016 03:47 pm (UTC)
"Proof of surviving wild new year celebration..." :)) I can barely stay awake until midnight to ring in the New Year now that I'm older. :)
(no subject) - ilay_original - Jan. 7th, 2016 03:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
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