Today is the third chapter of our series about Christmas traditions from around the world! Carolina Torres, one of our consultants, has written about the Novena, an ancient tradition celebrated in Colombia where she is from, but also celebrated all around the world.
The practice of a novena is an ancient tradition of devotional praying in Christianity, consisting of private or public prayers repeated for nine successive days or weeks. The word Novena is rooted in the Latin word for nine, and refers to the nine days between the Feast of the Ascension and Pentecost.
In some Christian communities, such as in Africa, Latin America and the Philippines, novena traditions are popular and include devotional rituals such as congregational prayers, statue decoration, hymn singing with music, as well as community fiesta events over beverages, refreshments or processions. Individuals may express love and honor by kneeling, burning candles or placing flowers before the person represented by a statue.
Nine days with people we love, from friends to family members, all gathered around food such as buñuelos (a type of cheese fritter), natilla (custard-based dessert), hot cocoa with cheese and traditional Colombian Christmas carols. Grandparents and many devoted Catholics share thanks for the birth of Jesus Christ at this time of the year, and younger generations enjoy having a dance all together!
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