What Christmas Eve is all About

Christmas Eve is the entire day or evening before Christmas Day on December 24, the festival commemorating the birth of Jesus. Gifts, cakes and other treats, parties, night prayers and music shows are some of the traditions of Christmas that make Christmas Eve a magical night like no other.

Today Christmas Eve is the day where all the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ begins in the evening.

It is today that the family, friends, and relatives are brought together. People usually decorate their houses with colourful lights, Christmas trees, and bell rings during the festive season. 

If you are new in Juba, don’t get surprised to hear noises in your neighbourhood come mid night. You’re bound to be awoken by clanging sounds of doors, other metallic and plastic items being banged by those who had been waiting for the moment by counting the seconds away.

Those who were not counting the time would simply pick up by hearing the neighbour drumming away at any object that can make a loud noise. It is often a rippling sound picked from one neighbourhood to another. The noise is believed to be driving away all of the evils and misdeeds of ending year away, and prepare for blessings in the new year.  Like other traditions in every country, such is one of those practiced here in Juba.

Today, the faithful will attend a night prayer of mass also known as the Christmas Vigil. It is perceived as the culmination of the Advent season. The celebration of midnight by the masses is based on the ancient belief that Jesus was born precisely at the stroke of twelve. Therefore, everywhere were the happy sounds of pealing bells, light sparkling everywhere, and hymns of joy, etc. are some of the imminent aspects of Midnight Mass.

Celebrating a Midnight Mass at midnight on Christmas Eve marks the beginning of Christmas Day. People gather together and celebrate the occasion. Traditionally, churches hold candlelight services which are typically held earlier in the evening. 

It is a time to gather with friends and family. In Juba, it is also a time of fun especially the young people. Dates and hangouts are the popular activity. Unfortunately, it is on this day here, where many bad things happen too. With violent gang activities, robberies, high alcohol and drug consumption, drunk-driving and motorbike riding, accidents, and immorality, you may want to remain at home, or at least be smart and alert.

The organized forces will also be out there in full force. Although they are there to protect, you can’t be sure if you will not cross path with some of the unprincipled ones who defy orders and do the very opposite of their mandates. Also ensure you, or your daughters and sons are decently dressed when they choose to go for the night vigil. See to it that they don’t carry bags apart from their purses for the case of girls. Else, you will not like the clothes they change in to once out of the gate.

Take care and Merry Christmas!

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