Voices from Russia

Friday, 25 December 2015

25 December 2015. THIS is the Proper Orthodox Response to Western Christmas

00 ria-novosti 25 december christmas 251215

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Our Lord Christ calls us to LOVE all those about us… not JUDGE them. ‘Nuff said…

BMD

Thursday, 24 December 2015

24 December 2015. As Seen by Vitaly Podvitsky… To the Nativity of Christ!

00 Vitaly Podvitsky. To the Nativity of Christ! 2015

To the Nativity of Christ!

Vitaly Podvitsky

2015

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Christmas! The day marking the birth of Jesus Christ is one of the main Christian holidays. Today, 25 December, is the Western celebration of Christmas. Today, millions of Christians around the world celebrate this holiday, but most Orthodox Churches (including the Patriarchate of Moscow and all the Russias) celebrate Christmas thirteen days later (7 January), as they use the Julian Calendar to calculate fixed feasts. This difference in dates doesn’t change anything essential in the meaning of Christmas, as we don’t know the exact date of the mystery of the birth of Christ. The tradition to celebrate Christmas on 7 January (Julian calendar) or 25 December (Gregorian) goes back to the holiday in honour of the pagan god Saturn, held in late December in the Roman Empire. Saturnalia was a precursor of modern Christmas and New Year, rolled up in one. With time, paganism died out, so, the Church decided to “baptise” Saturnalia, by replacing it with a feast marking the birth of Jesus Christ.  These days, Christmas is a joyous holiday… one of the most beautiful Christian feasts. Over the centuries, many traditions grew up around this celebration… the traditional holiday tree, the “cave” (Nativity scene), worship, and special foods. Every country added its own local usages to the generally accepted forms, making it a kaleidoscopic celebration of national folkways and identity.

Let the newborn baby Christ bring us all peace, joy, and love!

24 December 2015

Masterskaya Karikatura

Facebook

Editor:

All Christians celebrate the Nativity on 25 December, but the Julian Calendar used by most Orthodox is 13 days behind the Gregorian (in the 20th/21st centuries). In the 22nd century, the difference will lengthen to 14 days.

BMD

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

22 December 2015. Christmas DOES Have Pagan Links…

00 new year 15. rome italy. 04.01.14

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Christmas DOES have pagan links… 17-23 December was the ancient festival of Saturnalia. Ergo… Christmas happened under the cover of the toing and froing of that holiday (people travelling, visiting family, buying gifts and special foods, etc). It had a distinct date, but well within the ambit of the holiday. in short, the early Christians used the hubbub around the Saturnalia to keep their holiday under wraps. There are aspects of the Saturnalia in our Christian holiday celebrations such as public banquets, private gift-giving, continual partying, and a carnival atmosphere, so, in my view, the attempts of some commentators to “debunk” pagan links to Christmas backfire. Besides which, Christmas is a season where the better-off often “serve” the poorer amongst us… in the Saturnalia, masters would often “serve” their slaves. In short, there are more links than some are comfortable with. As for me, I believe that the “baptism” of these pagan customs wasn’t only innocent, it was beneficial and positively good. Our pagan ancestors weren’t evil… they were merely unchristian. Their good customs, intentions, folkways, and mores DESERVED “baptism” and I’m glad that the Church was wise enough to do that.

 Pagan links to Christmas? YES! It would’ve been strange otherwise, no?

BMD

Sunday, 20 December 2015

20 December 2015. Happy Holidays to ALL of My Friends

00 happy holidays to all my friends Vinni Pukh 201215

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I refuse to take part in the “Happy Holidays” vs “Merry Christmas” folderol. Some of my friends are believers… some aren’t. Some of my friends are Christians… others not. However, all of my friends are my friends equally and I love them all without measure. I honour and cherish them all for what they are. I have no wish to change ANYONE. For those who want to fight about it… go to hell, go directly to hell, and don’t bother the rest of us normal human beings with your made-up juvenile rot.

Love to ALL of my friends in this happy season.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS.

BMD

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