How to celebrate a Chinese style Christmas

Chinese lotus lantern christmasChristmas in China used to be celebrated only by the small number of Christians before the commercial aspect of the festival hit the nation.
Catholics comprise less that one percent of the population in China and till recently, Christmas in China used to be celebrated only by the small number of Christians. Now the commercial aspect of the festival has hit the nation hence, Christmas is celebrated by a larger number of people but with a bit of a Chinese twist. Since the Chinese New Year falls around the end of January and the Chinese celebrate that with a lot of pomp and circumstance, Christmas in China is celebrated almost like a run to the New Year. Here are some handy hints to celebrating the holiday season Chinese style.

A few suggestions:

  1. Festoon your home with beautiful paper lanterns - Christians in China celebrate Christmas by lighting their houses with these beautifully filigreed affairs. They decorate Christmas trees (called the trees of light) with paper chains, paper flowers, and paper lanterns.
  2. Hang up muslin stockings and hope that Dun Che Lao Ren (or Christmas Old Man) will visit your house and leave gifts for your family and you.
  3. Attend the Christmas Eve mass which has become quite popular in recent years.
  4. Attend and celebrate the Ta Chiu, a Taoist festival that takes place on December 27th in Hong Kong. Write your family’s and your name on pieces of paper for the priest to read out so that the names may be attached to a paper horse and burned in the hope that they will rise to heaven.
  5. Make preparations for the Chinese New Year; the non-Christian Chinese call this the Spring Festival. Celebrate this with festivities that include delicious meals.
  6. Pay respects to your ancestors and gift the children new clothes and toys, eat scrumptious food and watch firecracker displays.

Do’s

  • Keep bowls of oranges and tangerines displayed around your home as a symbol of wealth and happiness.
  • Give your family and friends red envelops that contain lucky money as a Chinese New Year gift.

Don’ts

  • Do not go overboard; do only as much as you can possibly pull off without straining yourself.

3 Comments about “How to celebrate a Chinese style Christmas”

  1. Krista Says:

    Hi, Im writing a comment to ask if anyone reading this knows how the people in Hong Kong dress for Christmas time. Like if they have any special things that they wear. Also, if there are any legends/superstitions that are passed on from one generation to the next about the holiday Christmas.
    Thank you, and I hope someone gets back to me soon. This is for a project for school and I can’t seem to find anything!
    So please, if you know any of this information get back to me as soon as you can.
    Thanks.

    You can send it to my email: redsoxbabii77@hotmail.com or you can send it to my myspace: myspace.com/redsoxbabii77
    =]


  2. jenni Says:

    Please help… I need to know chinese christmas games for a school project… thanx!!! ;(


  3. gandaea Says:

    OMG I JUST MARRIED TO SOMEONE.IDNT KNOW.THAT IS OUR TRADITION IN CHINA.WE MARRY RANDOM PEOPLE.OUR MOTHER CHOOSES THEM/TH ENGLISH LANGUAGE.PLEASE HELP ME.MY HUBBY IS AMAZING.EVEN THOUGH HE IS WEIRD.OHK.HI HAO.BYEEEEEEEEE.OMG IM HAVING A BABY


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