Ukraine moves Christmas Day in snub to Russia

As of my last update in September 2021, Ukraine celebrates Christmas on January 7th according to the Eastern Orthodox Church's Julian calendar. This date is different from the majority of Christian denominations that follow the Gregorian calendar and celebrate Christmas on December 25th.

In Ukraine, Christmas is a significant religious and cultural holiday. It is a time when families come together to celebrate and observe various traditions. On Christmas Eve, which falls on January 6th, a festive dinner called "Sviata Vecheria" or "Holy Supper" is prepared. The meal typically includes twelve meatless dishes, symbolizing the twelve apostles, and kutia, a traditional sweet grain pudding. After the dinner, families may attend a church service to mark the beginning of Christmas.

In recent years, Ukraine has experienced several political and social changes, and there may have been developments or shifts in how Christmas is celebrated. To get the most accurate and up-to-date information, it's best to refer to more recent sources or news.

As of the current date in 2023, it's important to note that I don't have access to real-time information, so I cannot provide the latest updates on specific events or changes that may have occurred in Ukraine. However, I can share some general information about the significance of Christmas in Ukrainian culture.

In Ukraine, Christmas is not only a religious observance but also a time of rich cultural traditions. Throughout the Christmas season, which extends beyond January 7th, various festivities and customs take place:

  1. Caroling: Groups of children and adults go from house to house singing traditional Christmas carols known as "koliadky" and "shchedrivky." They are often dressed in traditional Ukrainian folk costumes and receive treats or small gifts in return.
  2. Christmas Markets: Many cities and towns host Christmas markets, where vendors sell festive goods, including handmade crafts, ornaments, and traditional Ukrainian foods.
  3. Christmas Trees and Decorations: Like in many other countries, Ukrainians decorate Christmas trees with ornaments, lights, and garlands. However, some households may also have a "didukh," a sheaf of wheat symbolizing ancestors' spirits, as part of their decorations.
  4. Midnight Church Services: On Christmas Eve, people attend special church services, which begin late in the evening and continue into the early hours of Christmas Day.
  5. Festive Foods: Besides the Holy Supper on Christmas Eve, festive meals are enjoyed throughout the Christmas season, with traditional dishes like borscht (beetroot soup), varenyky (dumplings), and various sweet treats.
It's worth mentioning that Ukraine has a diverse cultural landscape, and Christmas traditions can vary across different regions and communities within the country.

For the most recent and detailed information on how Ukraine celebrates Christmas in 2023, I recommend checking reliable news sources, cultural websites, or reaching out to individuals with current knowledge of the country's customs and celebrations.

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