Christmas in Israel is unique throughout the world, with Christians of every denomination coming together to celebrate in a variety of ways. Because of this, Christmas in Israel is not a one-day affair.
Roman Catholics and Protestants celebrate on December 25, Orthodox Christians celebrate on January 6, and Armenian Christians celebrate on January 18. In fact, Jerusalem is known as the city of three Christmases.
Nazareth is home to Israel’s largest Christian Arab community. It recently held its annual Christmas market street fair, filled with arts and crafts as well as delicious traditional foods. Israeli singer Keren Hadar, along with the Upper Galilee Choir and Galilee Orchestra, performed at a combined Hannukah-Christmas concert on December 19.
On December 24, the traditional parade through the main street of Nazareth drew an estimated 30,000 celebrants who made their way to the main plaza of the Basilica of the Annunciation. Later that day, observers were dazzled by the annual display of fireworks, sponsored by Israel’s Ministry of Tourism.
In Jerusalem, there are numerous Christmas festivities occurring throughout Israel’s capital city, from holiday-themed tours to carolling and lots of shopping. In the Old City of Jerusalem, Santa Claus signals onlookers to buy a tree for the holiday, while the Jerusalem International YMCA- Young Men’s Christian Association, hosted a Christmas Carols Concert and open-air bells concert.
More stories on Christmas coming!