Christmas is a 48 days celebration in Mexico. It begins on December 16 with the posadas procession and continues till Candlemas on 2nd February. The celebrations in Mexico are very different from the entire world as they celebrate the festival for the longest duration. Mexican traditions are influenced by the Latin American culture.
And know that I’m with you always; yes, till the end of time – Jesus Christ.
The posadas are the main tradition of the Mexicans, they were earlier as a form of entertainment and are now have become a ritual. Kids or even family members enact the legend of birth of Jesus Christ. They dress up like pilgrims and carry idols of Mother Mary and Joseph. They knock at every house and ask for a shelter. They keep moving to and fro until someone finally allows them in. The posadas continue every day until the Christmas Eve ‘nochebeauna’. On The Christmas Eve the entire sky lights up with fireworks. People make artworks and keep candles inside of them and decorate their houses with it. Special decoration done in Mexico is making the piñatas stars. They have seven pointed tips and inside them confetti and candies are filled. Children using sticks break open the arms and grab the candies.
Every house there is a scenario of the Bethlehem Stable and The Three Kings, Shepherds and women working in a small replica. People eat circular ring shaped cakes on the Christmas Eve and a baby shaped item is inserted in it. Anyone who gets the baby in his or her slice is considered blessed. The Christmas meal has beuritos, salsa, puddings, tortillas and tamales. A special drink made of honey and dry fruits is served ponche con piquet.
The Mexican traditions are ab nitio creations. They have formed their own methods of celebrating the festival. After all Christmas allows everyone to celebrate and indulge in merry making the way they like – in the Church or under the Mistletoe!! 😉
Carols are the major part of any Christmas celebration. Mexican posadas are all about carol singing. People sing carols meaning that “Oh!! people inside the house we are tired pilgrims let us in” which is replied that “no we can’t allow you” until the last house door is knocked where the idols are placed. Then a thanksgiving prayer is done and the people proceed for the mid – night mass.
A very unique attribute is that Mexico has a warm pleasant weather during Christmas time and hence there is no snow. Christmas trees also don’t grow in that season and have now started becoming a trend in the Country. People go out shopping and enjoy buying presents for their family and friends. They also wish each other with Christmas messages.
The celebrations continue till The Candlemas Day on 2nd February. On this day people dress in their tuxedos and ladies in their most traditional gowns and they carry Jesus images to the Church. The people who had allowed the posadas presenters in their homes sell some sweets and cakes which are bought by the people.
The celebrations end after a long merry – making season!!