Orthodox Christmas

Wherever you are in the world, the cheer and the bright feeling brought by the holiday season are felt and shared by colorful and glistening decorations or ornaments flaunted on everyone’s homes, on streets, or in establishments signaling that Christmas is coming. While most people in the world celebrate Christmas on December 25, some wait thirteen more days after to commemorate this holiday. orthodox-christmas

Table of Content

Orthodox Christmas Definition & Meaning

The Orthodox Christmas is a holiday celebration participated in by the whole Orthodox Church.

The Orthodox Christmas follows the nearly 2000-year-old calendar, the Julian calendar which Julian Caesar adopted in 46 B.C.

When Is Orthodox Christmas?

Orthodox Christmas is celebrated every 7th of January, which is 12 days after the more common Christmas Day that most Christians celebrate. According to National Geographic, twelve percent of the world’s Christians wait around until January to enjoy that holiday.

Orthodox Christmas Purpose, Importance

No matter the difference in the day of celebration, Orthodox Christmas holds the same relevance to the followers of the Orthodox church as the Christmas that other Christians celebrate. It is a reminder of the nativity of Jesus Christ and God’s mercy that saves the world.

Sustain Traditions

Like other cultures and religions, celebrations grounded on truths aligned to their beliefs, such as Christmas, are commemorated every year to sustain the traditions that are associated with them. It becomes an avenue for older generations to pass them on to younger generations in the hopes that they outlive them and the generations after them. Andrew Muha, in The Times’ Christina Shelehada’s article, said that these Orthodox Christmas traditions, from over hundreds of years, were handed down and sustained by many generations.

Gather Generations of People

Orthodox Christmas is a time in the year that brings families from different generations to one place and comes together to reignite the love that is shared within the family. This is when the passage of traditions, faith, and wisdom occurs in the homes that celebrate it.

Enrich Faith

Just like other Christians, Orthodox Christmas serves as a reminder of the salvation that was brought upon them by the birth of Jesus Christ. Through this holiday, their faith is enriched and perhaps renewed, by participating in religious activities that allow them to make a reflection on the past year and worship God and His goodness.

What’s in an Orthodox Christmas?

Orthodox Christmas marks the start of Christmastide or Yuletide which is the start of the twelve-day season. A festive liturgy is served in all churches on midnight of Christmas Eve. When the service ends, a lighted candle, which symbolizes the Star of Bethlehem, is brought out and placed in the middle of the church. According to folk tradition, Yuletide is a time for festivities, outdoor games, caroling, and fortune-telling.

How to Create an Orthodox Christmas Social Media Post

You can let your social media accounts join in on the holiday feels by posting Christmas-themed banners or photos. We made a run-down of ways to create an Orthodox Christmas post on a few social media platforms.

Facebook

1. Select an Orthodox Christmas Facebook Post Template.

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Select from various options of free Facebook templates aligned to the Orthodox Christmas theme. Click the template that fits your preference. Then, proceed to the editor tool beside the template.

2. Fill Text.

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In the editor tool, you can do some adjustments such as filling in the main text on the template you have chosen. When you click the Fill option on the left-hand side of the screen, you will be able to change the greeting or add words. This will make it more personal.

3. Change Background.

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Besides adding texts, you can also change the background of the post template. With the Background tool, you can either choose to change the color of the background or entirely change it to a different photo. You can even change the background into a video to make it more alive.

4. Add Graphics.

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If you are feeling more creative, you can add more graphics to the template post. Here, you can place stickers or clipart to add more personality to it. Add as many graphics as you want and make a fun process for yourself.

5. Save or Print Template.

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The last step in creating your Facebook post is saving your template to your computer or any device you are using. And if you choose to print a physical copy of it as a Christmas greeting card, you can do that, too. Just click the three dots next to the Download button and you will see the options to save or print.

Instagram

1. Select an Orthodox Christmas Instagram Post Template.

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Choose from a selection of post templates creatively designed for an Orthodox Christmas Instagram post. Select the template of your choice and click the Editor tool button. This editor will enable you to make some edits to the template.

2. Upload File.

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In the Editor too, you can choose from some of the options on how you want to make your Instagram post template look. An Upload option is available in case you want to add a photo, video, or audio that personalizes it. Just click the Upload Your File button and select the file you want to add to the template.

3. Add Text.

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You may also add texts to the template. It could be a personalized Christmas greeting or a quote that captures your wishes or thoughts during the holiday season. You have the option to add a heading, a sub-heading, or even a paragraph and resize it to fit the template.

4. Upload a Logo.

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If you are using the template to post on your business’s social media account, you can upload your company logo and place it in the template. Adding the logo will help make your social media posts consistent, cohesive, and aligned with your other posts. Like the previous step, just click the Upload Your File button and select your business logo design.

5. Save Template.

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To save your edited template, click the ellipsis next to the Download button and choose Save. However, you may also print the template directly from the website. Click the Print icon and connect to your printer.

Snapchat

1. Select an Orthodox Christmas Snapchat Post Template.

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Among the variety of Orthodox Christmas post templates for Snapchat, select one that matches your personality and taste. Making use of templates is a life hack that helps you take advantage of social media more. When you have chosen a template, select the photo and go to the free Editor tool by clicking the blue button beside the template.

2. Fill In Text.

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By choosing the Fill option on the Editor tool, you will be able to edit or entirely change the greeting or the texts in the template. With this tool, you can also adjust the size of texts according to your preference. Also, you can drag the texts and move them wherever in the template.

3. Place Additional Graphics.

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If you feel like the template could use some more graphic designs, you can do so. To choose additional designs, click Graphics and select the items that you want. There are options for photos, clipart, emoji, stickers, and even audio!

4. Change Template Background.

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The Editor tool allows also allows you to edit or change the background of the template. You can select from a variety of photos and videos. Plus, you can change the color of the background if you like a simpler look.

5. Save Edited Template.

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Once you are satisfied with the changes you made to the template, you can now proceed to save it. To do that, click the three dots on the upper right side of the screen, next to Download, and select the Save icon. If you wish to make a printed copy of it, you can, too, by clicking the print icon.

Orthodox Christmas Facts

  • To symbolize purity and the cloth that baby Jesus was wrapped in after birth, a white cloth is used on dinner tables in some countries.
  • Holy Supper is what the Orthodox Christmas meal is known which includes traditional food like mushroom soup, Lete bread, nuts, biscuits, porridge, and honey.
  • Orthodox Christmas is widely celebrated in countries like Russia, Ukraine, and Serbian communities.
  • Orthodox Christmas does not observe pagan traditions like decorating a Christmas tree or exchanging gifts.
  • In Macedonia, the traditional Christmas Day greeting is “Hristos se rodi” which translates to “Christ is born.”

Orthodox Christmas Traditions

According to Eastern Orthodox, there are various traditions that are practiced on Orthodox Christmas even today like caroling. In an article by Jenna Cocullo, some traditions were explained such as the forty-day fasting by members of the Orthodox church before Christmas where meat is not allowed nor fish for those in the Greek denomination. Another tradition is associated with Slavic cultures, which are conservative and have preserved layers of pagan traditions, that include a sacred ritual where they invite the dead through embroidered towels hung from the window serving as a guided pathway.

Orthodox Christmas vs New Year

Orthodox Christmas is celebrated by members of the Orthodox Church on January 7 every year.

New Year is a holiday that signals the start of another year and is celebrated on January 1.

Orthodox Christmas Ideas & Examples

Orthodox Christmas Ideas

  • Attend the Christmas Eve mass.
  • Have a Christmas Eve feast with the family (or friends if you’re far away from family).
  • Go caroling around the neighborhood.
  • Recreate traditional Christmas meals at home.
  • Visit a fortune-teller with friends or a significant other.
  • Bake a homemade qurban.
  • Join the Alilo, a large procession, with friends or family.
  • Decorate a Christmas tree.
  • Walk through markets and buy a badnjak, an oak tree branch with golden leaves.
  • Enjoy Christmas Day parties in the city.

Orthodox Christmas Examples

Looking for templates for holiday-themed invitations and social media post templates? Complete your Orthodox Christmas celebration with these fun and colorful examples:

1. Christmas Mailing Label Sample

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2. Christmas Party Planner Example

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3. Christmas Shipping Label Template

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4. Christmas Star Clipart

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5. Christmas Table Tent Template

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6. Merry Orthodox Christmas Flyer Template

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7. Merry Orthodox Christmas Youtube Banner Template

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8. Orthodox Christmas Concert Flyer Template

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9. Orthodox Christmas Fair Flyer Template

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10. Orthodox Christmas Quote

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FAQs

What do we celebrate at Orthodox Christmas?

The Orthodox Christmas celebrates the nativity of Jesus Christ.

What does Orthodox say on Christmas?

The members of the Orthodox Church greet each other “Hristo se rodi” and are typically responded with “Vaistinu se rodi.”

Why is Orthodox Christmas on the 7th of January?

The Orthodox Christmas is on the 7th of January because the Orthodox Church remained to follow the Julian Calendar instead of the Gregorian Calendar which is followed by other Christian churches.

How does Coptic Orthodox celebrate Christmas?

Coptic Orthodox celebrate Christmas by attending a Christmas Eve mass at midnight on the 6th of January.

Which countries celebrate Orthodox Christmas?

The countries that celebrate Orthodox Christmas are Russia, Turkey, Serbia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Macedonia, Belarus, Moldova, and Montenegro.

What do Orthodox Christians believe?

The Orthodox Christians share the same belief with other Christian churches but in terms of celebrating Christmas, the former believes that the birth of Jesus is on January 7.

Why is Orthodox Christmas different than Catholic?

On a general note, the Orthodox Christmas is different than the Catholic because the former doesn’t follow the Gregorian calendar and the pagan traditions that the latter follows.

What determines Orthodox Christmas?

The Orthodox Christmas can be determined by its celebration 13 days after December 25 and the fasting that the church members partake in before the feasting on January 7.

Why is Orthodox Christmas important?

Orthodox Christmas is important because it is a reminder of God’s mercy that saved the world through the birth of Jesus Christ.

What do you say for Orthodox Christmas?

To greet on Orthodox Christmas, you say “Hristo se rodi.”

How long is Orthodox Christmas?

Usually, members of the Orthodox Church celebrate Christmas for over three days starting on January 6.

What religion is Orthodox Christmas?

The Orthodox Christmas is celebrated by Orthodox Christian churches around the world.

What are the 12 days of Christmas Orthodox?

The 12 days of Christmas are the days between the birth of Jesus and the coming of the Three Wise Men, however, for the Orthodox Church, this starts on January 7 and ends on January 19.

Why do Orthodox fast for 40 days?

The Orthodox fast for 40 days like how Jesus fasted for forty days in the desert.

What is the significance of Orthodox Christmas?

The significance of Orthodox Christmas is that it serves as a reminder to its believers of God’s love and it is an avenue to preserve traditions.