World Christmas Traditions now brings you to Ireland and let you discover fascinating Irish Christmas Traditions and Customs. The Irish Christmas is filled with both old and new Christmas traditions.
The Irish people are very religious. They celebrate Christmas by going out and hearing Mass during midnight. The midnight Mass is filled with live music and lots of Christmas Carols.
One particular Irish Christmas tradition is going out for a horse race on St. Stephen’s day. The Saint is said to be the patron saint of horses, and Irish go out in droves to Leopardstown,South Dublin to witness exciting horse races.
Hundreds of Irish also go to Forty Foot Rock on Christmas Day to go and have a chilling Christmas Day Swim. The water during this time of the year drops to 50F/10C. Swimming in the icy waters is said to cure hang-overs due to over drinking in Christmas parties.
Irish children are told about the famous story “The Dead” written by James Joyce. The Dead is part of a collection called the Dubliners. The story tells of the magic of life and death. Some say that it is the equivalent of another popular Christmas story, “The Christmas Carol”.
Another old Irish Christmas tradition is the Wren Boy Procession. It started during the Penal times when a group of sleeping soldiers was given an alarm by a pack of wren birds by playing the soldier’s drums. It is a common sight inIreland to see people going door to door singing Christmas carols wearing old clothes and with blackened faces.
Christmas trees are also popular in most Irish houses, but the Christmas wreath is more popular. Every Christmas, a Christmas Wreath made out of Holly is placed in every door.
The Feast of the Epiphany on January 6 is also known in Ireland as Nollaig na mBean. Nollaig na mBean is known as the Irish Women’s Christmas, for this in this day, Irish women can relax and leave all the household chores to their husbands.