Christmas Celebrations in Vietnam

In Vietnam, Christmas Eve is often more important than Christmas Day. Christmas isn’t an official public holiday and many people think it’s only a holiday for Christians.

In Ho Chi Minh city (which is the largest city in Vietnam and used to be called Saigon) people (especially young people) like to go into the city center, where there is a Catholic Cathedral. The streets are crowded with people on Christmas Eve and in the city center cars are not allowed for the night.

People celebrate by throwing confetti, taking pictures and enjoying the Christmas decorations and lights of big hotels and department stores. Lots of cafes and restaurants are open for people to enjoy a snack!

Not many people in Vietnam are Christians, but some people like to go to Midnight Mass services to watch the Nativity plays and hear Christmas music.

Vietnam used to be part of the French Empire and there are still French influences in the Christmas traditions.

All churches, and some Christian homes, will have a nativity crib scene or ‘creche’. Many Catholic churches have a big scene with nearly life size statues of Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus, the shepherds and animals.

HOW VIETNAMESE CELEBRATE CHRISTMAS

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