Peruvians celebrate Christmas Eve with hugs and good wishes

"It was pleasing to see lot of non-Christians celebrating Christmas with the community".

Fener Greek Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomew presided over a Christmas Day mass at Aya Yorgi Church in the courtyard of the patriarchate building. The church has also been decorated with balloons and paper lanterns. After the midnight masses, members of the Christian community in the state dressed in best attire to match the occasion exchanged greetings among their friends and loved ones.

The biggest Mass in the Valley was held at the Holy Family Catholic Church at Maulana Azad Road here, where hundreds of Christians, including women and children, assembled to celebrate the birthday of Jesus Christ and held special prayers.

Christian community across Jammu and Kashmir, like elsewhere in world, celebrated Christmas with religious fervor and enthusiasm with praying for peace and prosperity for Kashmir. There was an abundance of Santa Claus who continued to give small gifts to the children.

The Christmas celebrations began with midnight mass late on Saturday night in all the churches of Hyderabad.

Pastors at area churches said they hope their Christmas Eve messages will offer encouragement to not just their congregations, but anyone who feels moved to attend.

Chief Minister Mehbooba took to twitter and greeted people on the eve of Christmas.

The celebrations that commenced today will now continue in the beach state till the New Year.

"Christmas celebration comes once a year, and this is God providing us opportunity and giving us another chance to remember his love towards us, so that we melt the heart of stone and transform it into a tender soft one and distribute love in every possible way", he added. Faithful from all over the country gathered in large numbers at Shrine Basilica of our Lady of Health in Vailankanni and also New Jerusalem Church at Tarangambadi, the oldest protestant church in Asia, and offered prayers. Leader of the Opposition in AP Assembly YS Jagan Mohan Reddy too extended greetings to people. The rush of devotees started in churches from last midnight who participated in special prayers and lighting of candles.

  • Rogelio Becker