Bethlehem is a great place to celebrate Christmas. Bethlehem is a town located in Palestine. In Greek, Bethlehem means “house of bread.” According to the Bible, Bethlehem is the birthplace of Jesus. Bethlehem is home for the largest Palestinian Christian communities in the Middle East. Talking about the birth of Jesus is talking about Christmas. On Christmas day, the residents of Bethlehem do many activities to celebrate Christmas. Just like the celebration of Christmas in many other countries, Christmas celebrations in Bethlehem begin with Christmas services. People from all over the world attend these. On Christmas day, there is a carnival around the church to commemorate Christmas. This carnival has a parade with Santa Claus and bagpipe bands. There are also women in traditional Palestinian clothing.
The following are various activities that can be done on Christmas at Bethlehem:
- Christmas Worship Tradition
Each Christian tradition, Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox, has its own Christmas service. They have very different religious traditions, but their purpose remains the same, namely to interpret the meaning of the birth of Jesus. Each tradition also does services on different days, depending on what day they celebrate Christmas.
This link gives more information about the Christmas celebration done for each tradition: http://www.sacred-destinations.com/israel/bethlehem-christmas.
- Christmas Tour
Many travel agents offer Christmas tours to visit popular places, such as the Church of the Nativity, Manger Square, Church of the Holy Tomb, the garden of Gethsemane and the Sea of Galilee.
The celebration of Christmas is not complete without enjoying typical Christmas food. One dish served on Christmas in Bethlehem is turkey cooked with cinnamon, pepper, and nutmeg, and then stuffed with rice and almonds.
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