Monday, January 06, 2014

Russian Christmas (Рождество)

Many of you probably know that Russians have always been big on celebrating the New Year rather than Christmas.

After the 1917 Revolution, Christmas was banned throughout Russia, along with other religious celebrations. It wasn't until 75 years later, in 1992, that the holiday was openly observed.

Today, it's once again celebrated in grand fashion, with the faithful participating in an all-night Mass in incense-filled Cathedrals amidst the company of fellow believers and the painted icons of the Saints of old.

The Russian Orthodox Church still uses the old Julian calendar; therefore, its Christmas celebration falls on January 7th. It's a day of both solemn ritual and joyous celebration. Before this date, Orthodox Russians fast for 40 days. The Lent period ends with the first star in the night sky on January 6 -- a symbol of Jesus Christ's birth. Many Orthodox Christians go to the church to attend a Christmas liturgy that evening.

So today It would be more than appropriate to teach you how to say Merry Christmas in Russian.

'Merry Christmas' will be 'С Рождеством Христовым' 

(S Rozh-deh-stvom Khris-to-vym)