Pakistan’s Christian community is celebrating Christmas with a special message this year. As December approaches, our fellow Christian friends wait for the eve of Christmas just like Muslims await Chand Raat. Undoubtedly, Christmas is Eid for the Christian community. Churches and public places are adorned with lights, bells, and special Christmas trees. On this 25th December, we wish our friends of the Christian community a very Merry Christmas. Here’s a list of how this day is acknowledged in Pakistan.
- Special Decorations :
Churches around the country have been illuminated ahead of Christmas. Many restaurants and markets in the major cities are decked out with lights, trees, decorations, cakes, and gifts. In the big Christian areas, each house is decorated and has a star on the roof. The streets are also decorated and lit. There are also decoration competitions between neighbors.
- The week ahead of Christmas:
In many areas, carol singing is performed by various groups. They go from house to house singing carols and in return, the families offer something to the choir. Mostly the money collected from such carols is used for charity work or is given to the church.
- Christmas Eve and the day of celebration:
On Christmas Eve, Churches are packed for the midnight or vigil-mass services. The choirs sing very special hymns. After the vigil-mass, in some places, there are fireworks that help celebrate the start of the big day. People dance exchange presents and enjoy the special night. The day starts with prayers at the churches as the coronavirus situation has improved in the country. Special cake-cutting ceremonies have also been planned at different government ministries and private organizations.
- Christmas Celebrations:
25th December is a big day for Christians across the world. Just like Easter, Christmas is also celebrated in full joy and happiness in Pakistan. People wear their best, vibrant, and colorful clothes. They can stay in the Church courtyard for hours, enjoying various foods from the different stalls. The evening is usually celebrated with immediate family or relatives where special food is enjoyed. Adults often visit their parents. Gifts are also exchanged on this joyous day.
- Santa Claus:
The biggest charm on Christmas for every child is Santa Claus. He is also known as the Christmas baba in Pakistan. A man adorning a big red suit, a long white beard, and a red cap with a big artificial belly goes around giving candies and presents to children. Santa Claus is the biggest attraction of Christmas for the community.
As Christmas celebrations begin, Pakistani authorities have tightened security around churches and mass prayer sites all across the country to guard against any unwanted incident. To strengthen the protection of religious buildings, walk-through gates have been installed at entry and exit points and the Christmas services and sites of celebration will be monitored through CCTV cameras.
President Alvi addressed the community saying “the world today is in dire need of spreading the message of peace promoted by Jesus Christ (Hazrat Issa) and the Prophet Mohammad.” He also urged the Christians, Muslims, and members of other religions in Pakistan to show mercy and compassion and promote peace and harmony towards each other.
We have a special short film called “Cup Cake” do visit our Youtube channel to watch exclusive content from Neemopani regularly.