Christmas in Argentina
In the continuing series of Traditional Hispanic Christmas Celebrations, we will begin by looking at Argentina. The traditional Christmas in Argentina is so like ours in many ways. Yet there are ways in which Argentina is unique. In many ways it has developed it’s own individual traditional ways for celebrating Christmas.
So much like our own Christmas, the holidays are celebrated with great joy. There are the common ties that most cultures that celebrate Christmas seem to share. There is the tradition of Nativity scene and Christmas tree, gift giving, banquets. It is a time of family and friends so much like our own. The Nativity scene is set up in the house, depicting the birth scene of Jesus. The tree is decorated with candles lights and ornaments. All the presents are placed under the tree and await the morning of Christmas. On the 24th much like other traditional Hispanic families, everyone waits until late at night to eat and the presents are opened at midnight. The devout Argentineans attend church services, which is a long standing and shared family tradition. Much like our day, religious devotion and church attendance take up a great deal of the day. On Christmas Eve, family and friends gather to share a dinner feast that usually includes great celebrating.
Yet unlike our cooler climate during the season of Christmas, in Argentina, the climate is warm and summery. Many families plan picnics or Bar B Ques to take advantage of the fair weather. Niños envuettas is another favorite dish. It is made of steak cut in pieces three inches square, stuffed with minced mean mixed with onions, hard-boiled eggs, and spices. The meat is shaped in rolls, browned, and baked or simmered until tender.
Sidra finds a familiar place at the celebration table at Christmas time in the Argentinian family. Another variation is that not just traditional Pine tree is used in the home of the Argentina Family. Any artificial or live tree may be decorated in celebration of the holiday. Champagne and fireworks are also used to celebrate this holiday that due cooler weather we would not be able to enjoy.
Like all the Hispanic Cultures by Tradition the Christmas is not just a holiday but a season of celebration that centers firstly on the faith of Jesus. As with most Hispanic families, the religion traditionally is Catholic. In the Catholic religion the Christmas season begins with Advent and ends with the Baptism of Jesus. It is a beautiful time to reflect and grow in tradition and culture, family and faith.