Dec 23, 2020, 10:31 AM
Journalist ID: 1843
News Code: 84158608
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Iranian Christians to celebrate Christmas in virtual ceremonies

Orumiyeh, Dec 23, IRNA - The coronavirus pandemic has prompted Iranian Christians in East Azerbaijan province to hold the Christmas and the New Year celebrations by means of virtual technologies.

The last days of December are a very busy time for the Christian people in Orumiyeh, the largest city in West Azerbaijan province, who prepare to celebrate Christmas and the New Year, but they have to avoid family gatherings and participation in churches due to the restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Head of the Assyrian Association of Orumiyeh Stanley Simons said that this Christmas will be held different from previous years' feasts and that the priests would perform the Mass and say prayers lonely.

The Christians in Orumiyeh are determined to break the coronavirus outbreak; so, they are going to use phone calls and virtual social networks instead of holding family gatherings, Simons said.

Fasting is one of the traditions that the Christian devotees observe, he said, adding that the fasting period starts 25 days before Christmas and ends on Christmas day.

Another tradition of these days is that the Christians donate money by the means of churches' accounts in order to help the needy people in a way that only the priests know the identities of the poor, Simons said.

A Christian citizen living in Orumiyeh noted that decorating Christmas trees, cleaning houses and baking different kinds of sweets and preparing special foods are among Christian people's customs to celebrate Christmas.

The celebrations of the birth of Jesus Christ and the New Year begin on December 25 and continue until January 7. The Assyrians celebrate the birthday anniversary of Jesus on December 25, while the Armenians commemorate it on January 7.

Christmas promotes values such as goodwill, generosity, kindness and family togetherness.

1424

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