Archive for December 17th, 2009

On the Seventh Night of Chanukah My True Love Gave to Me . . . 

Thursday, December 17th, 2009

. . .  another video to help you through the Chanukah fatigue!

A Chanukah Video Highlight

"Melvin & the Chipmunks – Chanukah"

December 17, 2009: The 7th Night of Chanukah

(December 17) Tonight we're observing. . .  Muharram 1

Thursday, December 17th, 2009


Muharram 1 (Begins at sundown – Islamic New Year)
Tonight marks the beginning of Muharram, the first month of the Islamic calendar. Considered the second most holy month, after Ramadan, the name of the month Muharram is derived from the word haram, which means forbidden, indicating that fighting is forbidden during this month.

photo credit: via flickr

Did You Know? Countdown to Christmas 2009 (12/17)

Thursday, December 17th, 2009

dyk-christmas09

Did You Know?
Facts, Figures &
Folklore about Christmas

Dec 17 : 08 days till Christmas

Did you know that the Roman’s celebrated a festival in mid-December that is believed to have inspired many of our Christmas traditions?

Their festival was called Saturnalia which began the middle of December and ended January 1st. With cries of “Jo Saturnalia!” the celebration would include masquerades in the streets, big festive meals, visiting friends, and the exchange of good-luck gifts called Strenae. The Romans would also deck their halls with garlands of laurel and green trees lit with candles.

The Early Christians wanted to keep the birthday of their Christ child a solemn and religious holiday, not one of cheer and merriment as was the pagan Saturnalia. But as Christianity spread they were alarmed by the continuing celebration of pagan customs and Saturnalia among their converts. At first the Church forbid this kind of celebration. But it was to no avail. Eventually it was decided that the celebration would be tamed and made into a celebration fit for the Christian Son of God.

BTW – Saturnalia is still being celebrated today, December 17th.

Christmas is the Christian festival celebrating the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, and is a central part of the winter holiday season. In Christianity the holiday marks the beginning of the larger season of Christmastide, which lasts twelve days. And although traditionally a Christian holiday, Christmas is widely celebrated worldwide by many non-Christians.

Popular holiday customs include the playing of seasonal music, gift-giving, the exchange of greeting cards, observing special church celebrations and masses. The display of holiday decorations are common; including Christmas trees, indoor and outdoor lights, garlands, mistletoe, and nativity scenes.

Santa Claus, a popular mythological figure, is also an important part of the celebration and is associated with the bringing of gifts for children.

Join us for a new Did You Know holiday fact each day as we countdown to Christmas. This year Christmas Eve will be celebrated Thursday December 24, Christmas Friday December 25.

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(December 17) Today we're celebrating . . .  Saturnalia

Thursday, December 17th, 2009


Saturnalia
An ancient festival and time of merriment celebrating the Roman god Saturn and believed by many to have influenced the early Catholic Church’s decision to celebrate the birth of Christ on December 25th.

The Roman’s celebrated their god Saturn. Their festival was called Saturnalia which began the middle of December and ended January 1st. With cries of “Jo Saturnalia!” the celebration would include masquerades in the streets, big festive meals, visiting friends, and the exchange of good-luck gifts called Strenae (lucky fruits)…*

*source: Christmas on the Net – History of Christmas

photo credit: via flickr

2009 Video Advent Calendar: December 17th

Thursday, December 17th, 2009

A Holiday Video Countdown to Christmas – Day 17

"Rob Thomas – A New York Christmas"

December 17, 2009: 08 Days Till Christmas

You can check out a new holiday video each day right here or check out our Advent Calendar each day.

link: Advent Calendar on the Net

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