Because around 80% of Mexicans identify as Catholic, Christmas in Mexico is an immensely popular holiday.
But in Mexico, Christmas isn’t a one-time event. It’s a full month of celebrations, marked with family feasts and lots of piñatas.
Starting on 12 December and lasting until 6 January, Christmas celebrations have their own flair.
And while Christmas symbols such as Santa Claus and Christmas trees do have their place, Mexican Christmas traditions such as candle-lit processions, elaborate nativity scenes, Christmas carols, dancing and fireworks are deeply rooted in the country’s Spanish history.
Let’s see how they celebrate!
12 December: Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe, a popular Catholic feast that celebrates the belief that a man encountered the Virgin Mary, Mexico’s patron saint in Mexico City on December 9 and 12, 1531.
16-24 December: Las Posadas, with children carrying candles as they walk around to houses and singing. Posada means inn or lodging, so this tradition represents Mary and Joseph searching for shelter in the Biblical Christmas story. On each night of the Posadas, a different family holds a party, where there is food, drinks, music, piñatas, and fireworks.
24 December: Christmas Eve, the main event of the whole season. This night is known as Noche Buena, and it is when most families come together to celebrate. At midnight, many families go to a special mass, known as the Misa de Gallo – Mass of the Rooster-.
25 December: Christmas Day, while although Mexican continue feasting, although they may be often too tired to do much else.
28 December: Day of Los Santos Inocentes- the Sainted Innocents – to honour the babies King Herod ordered to be killed in his attempts to kill the Baby Jesus. Mexican Christmas tradition includes telling people bald-faced lies, which represents the trickery of the innocent.
6 January: Reyes -Three Kings Day-.
2 February: La Calendaria -the Candles-, the final holiday-related to Christmas in Mexico, and many people have large parties on this day.
Another classic Mexican Christmas custom is las Pastorelas.
There is no Christmas season without these pastoral dramas of the nativity, depicting the shepherds’ journey following the star of Bethlehem to find the biblical nativity.
Whether in remote towns or in the big Mexican cities, pastorelas set the stage for the whole of December and leave us, through their playful language and funny situations, the most important message of the season: Good always overcomes Evil.
So, as Mexicans do, let’s celebrate largely!
Host your Christmas party with friends, family or colleagues at Chingon.
The venues are open for bookings and private hires all through December.
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