International

Ukraine Celebrates First Christmas On 25 December, Breaks Russian Tradition

Ukraine, in a further shift from Russia, has adopted the Western, or Gregorian, calendar for its Christmas celebrations, aligning it with the calendar used in everyday life.

Advertisement

Ukrainians
info_icon

KYIV, Ukraine  — Ukrainian Orthodox Christians are preparing to celebrate Christmas on 25 December for the first time, marking a departure from the traditional date of 7 January used in Ukraine and Russia, which follows the Julian calendar.

Ukraine has adopted the Western, or Gregorian, calendar for its Christmas celebrations, aligning it with the calendar used in everyday life.

"All Ukrainians are together. We all celebrate Christmas together. On the same date, as one big family, as one nation, as one united country," said Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in a Christmas message released Sunday evening.

This move is seen as a deliberate snub to Moscow, which initiated a full-scale invasion of Ukraine nearly two years ago.

Advertisement

So far, at least 10,000 civilians, including more than 560 children, have been killed and over 18,500 have been injured since Russia launched its full-scale armed attack against Ukraine on 24 February 2022, according to the United Nations Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine (HRMMU). 

Why the variance in dates? 

The primary purpose of Christmas is to commemorate the birth of Jesus, revered by Christians as the son of God. Despite the widespread celebration of Christmas on December 25th, historical evidence does not substantiate the idea that Jesus was actually born on this specific date.

The disparity in dates is linked to the variance between the 'Gregorian' and 'Julian' calendars. The Russian Orthodox Church adheres to the Julian calendar, observing Christmas on January 7th.

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement