Mexico officially the United Mexican States is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of Mexico.
The Capital and largest city of this country is Mexico City.
Christmas Celebrations in Mexico :
In Mexico, Christmas is celebrated from the December 12th to January 6th. A common denominator is the posada, a recreation of Mary and Joseph searching for a “room at the inn.” During the procession, the celebrants go from house to house carrying the images of Mary and Joseph looking. For the Posadas, the outside of houses are decorated with evergreens, moss and paper lanterns. In each Posada, children are given candles and a board, with painted clay figures of Mary riding on a donkey and Joseph, to process round the streets with. They call at the houses of friends and neighbors and sing a song at each home. The song they sing is about Joseph and Mary asking for a room in the house. The procession, which takes place during the 12 days before Christmas, moves along, growing in numbers until it reaches the church, where mass is held.
At the final Posada on Christmas Eve, a manger and figures of shepherds are put on to the board. When the Posada house has been found, a baby Jesus is put into the manger and then families go to a midnight Church service. After the service, the children get to enjoy a festive pinata party.A piñata is a decorated clay or papier-mâché jar filled with sweets and hung from the ceiling or tree branch. After the Church service there are more fireworks to celebrate the start of Christmas.
In the Ajijic area, a “riviera resort community” suburb of Guadalajara, in the little village of San Antonio, the posada is a most moving and spiritual experience. Same for Taxco and Queretaro. Catch the event in these areas if you can. Also in Queretaro, there’s a huge parade on December 23. In the town of Cajititlan (near Guadalajara), as in many other places in the Hispanic world, they celebrate the holidays on Three Kings Day (Epiphany), which falls on January 6th. In fact, this was the traditional time to celebrate the gift-giving aspect of Christmas throughout Mexico. But in most parts of the country, the holiday now coincides with the day of celebration north-of-the-border: December 25. Many children now expect gifts on both days.
In Mexico, children get their main presents at Epiphany (January 6th). In Mexico Epiphany is known as ‘El Dia de los Reyes’. The presents are left by the Three Kings (or Magi) or ‘El Niñito Dios’ (baby Jesus) & Santo Clós (Santa Claus). It’s traditional to eat a special cake called ‘Rosca de Reyes’ (Three Kings Cake) on Epiphany. A figure of Baby Jesus is hidden inside the cake. Whoever has the baby Jesus in their piece of cake is the ‘Godparent’ of Jesus for that year on another important day, Candelaria which is on the 2nd February and is the end of the Mexican christmas celebrations.February 2nd ‘Candelaria’ (it’s called ‘Candlemas’ in many parts of the world) is the day when Christians remember when Jesus was taken to the Temple as a baby and officially named. Lots of Mexicans have a party for Candelaria. The largest ever Angel Ornament was made in Mexico.
The fiesta for the Virgin de la Soledad, the patron saint of Oaxaca, December 16-18, signals the beginning of the navidad festivities. On December 23, the annual Noche de los Rabanos takes place. This is a very festive time when booths are set up along the length and breadth of the zocalo. The focal point of each booth is an exhibit of hand-carved, giant radishes. Most often, these sculptures carry a religious theme. But this is not necessarily so. The subject could be comical, a scene from a bullfight or anything that strikes the fancy of the sculptor. On Nochebuena, processions from various churches fan out to the zocalo. There are also colorfully-decorated floats, music, traditional dancing, and pinata prizes. On Christmas Eve, in Santiago Tuxtla (Veracruz), everybody assembles in the zocalo for an evening of dancing the huapango to the accompaniment of a jarocho band. In Quiroga (Michoacan), villagers present Nativity plays (Pastorelas) at churches on Christmas Eve and on Christmas Day. In Mexico, Christmas time can very well be celebrated with a Christmas tree or artificial Christmas tree.
In Mexico people speak Spanish (Español), so Happy/Merry Christmas is ‘Feliz Navidad’.
Wishing all readers Merry Christmas 2019 & Happy New Year 2020 !!!