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Christmas in Bethlehem

Religious Events
Public Events

Christmas is a very busy season in the cities of Bethlehem, Beit Jala and Beit Sahour. Celebrations commence on the Sunday of the First Advent and last until 19 January. Every year, Christmas is celebrated three times: For the Roman Catholics, on 24 December, crowds of people gather on Star Street and Manger Square to welcome the parades, processions and scout troops, followed by a midnight mass at the Church of the Nativity, and Christmas is celebrated the following day. During the Greek Orthodox Christmas on 7 January, the town of Beit Sahour, renowned for the Shepherds’ Fields, celebrates the appearance of the angel to the shepherds announcing the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem, and a procession commences from the Greek Orthodox Shepherds’ Field and parades around the city. The Armenian Orthodox Christmas is celebrated on 19 January. During these occasions, the three towns receive the patriarchs of these churches who come in a procession from Jerusalem to Bethlehem, passing by the traditional pilgrimage route, Star Street. The season features several events that are inaugurated by a press conference, and followed by the lighting of the Christmas tree and the Christmas Market on Manger Square. The towns also host choirs and concerts from all over the world throughout the Advent period.

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