Christmas celebration in Vietnam
Known in Viet Nam as Noel, Christmas is one of the major festivals in Vietnam, celebrated with much fanfare by all religious communities.
Despite the fact that Buddhism is the dominant religion in Vietnam and Christians form only a minority, Christmas is one of the four most important festivals of the year. Although Christmas does not have historical roots in Viet Nam, people across the country are filled with the holiday spirit. Children in Vietnam love Santa Claus. Christmas is a celebration of everyone. Old and young alike go into the streets to join the festive atmosphere.
In Vietnam, Christmas is celebrated joyously with people thronging streets in Christmas Eve.
Nowaday, in big cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh, the streets, department stores and buildings are often lavishly decorated with Christmas trees, snowflake decorations, colourful ribbons and decorative balls and so on. Christmas tunes stream through shop fronts and the hotels, restaurants and stores are decorated with vibrant neon lights. The Catholic churches that dot the city are decorated with gaily covered nativity scenes and fairy lights and church services are also extended for the holiday season. There are also sparkling lighting decorations on trees on the streets and in front of houses, turning particular places into Christmas area. Usually the shops will have their signs advertising sales for Christmas season. These are popular for people to visit and look at the scenes.
Department stores are beautifully decorated with Christmas tree and vibrant neon lights.
Christmas Eve in Vietnam is a bigger deal than Christmas Day itself. On Christmas Eve, Christian family would gather together, pray for blessings and practice the Yuletide spirit of giving and sharing. The streets are crowded with people on this day. Fun-loving and sociable Vietnamese, whether Christians or not, come in and gather at the large Catholic Cathedral, throw confetti, enjoy the bright lights and displays in shop windows and have a snack at the local restaurants. Not many people in Vietnam are Christians, but some people like to go to Midnight Mass services to watch the Nativity plays and here Christmas music. For young couples, it's also chance to date and eat out. Thankfully, the holiday isn’t centered around shopping and eating out, students and young Vietnamese also exchange gifts and Christmas cards.
St. Joseph's Cathedral in Hanoi is a popular place to gather and celebrate Christmas.
After all, no matter whom you spend your Christmas with, how you spend it, or what you believe about it, we wish you a season of peace, joy and love. Merry Christmas!
Image Sources: Internet