Mangaluru, Dec 25, 2018: The spirit of Christmas and it’s joy is magnified in merry expectations and glee on Christmas eve, December 24; all over the world it is the most joyful evening, with people in their best moving into churches for the solemn mass. In Mangalore, often referred to as Rome of the East, it is a sight to behold and celebrations galore are the order of the night. The joy & happiness of Christmas was palpable in all of the many churches and it’s institutions around the city.
The Bishop of Mangalore was the focus of attention when he arrived a little after 7 pm to celebrate the solemn Christmas mass scheduled for 7.30pm at Rosario Cathedral, which is the Bishops rightful seat for his first Christmas celebration as Bishop of Mangalore. In most city churches this early scheduled was noticed as for years now giving way to the ’midnight-mass’ in respect for law and order.
The highlight of the celebrations and traditions in Churches and institutions will be the elaborate display of cribs and Christmas trees. Special sweets and food in the Mangalorean custom will be witnessed and family and friends will wish each other the best and celebrate. There will be special masses at different timings in different places in the city and surroundings through Christmas day today.
Going around the city glittering with lights and celebrations, plum cakes, cupcakes, multi-layered cakes, an array of muffins, bakeries across the city are ready to serve a slice of cake to all.
Cakes are a treat for Christmas Bakeries and sweet shops offer delicious cakes and baked Christmas cookies to those who step inside. Many well-known bakeries did brisk business in the city on Monday.
Many families prefer to buy the ‘kuswar’, traditional sweets made during Christmas season which include nevryo, kideo, gulio, kokkisan, rice laddu, tukdi and of course cakes), from bakeries. Many bakeries are offering ‘gift packs’ which contain all ‘kuswar’. Christmas specialties include a variety of cakes such as carrot cake, date and walnut cake and rich plum cake. ‘Kuswar’ includes over 22 different traditional sweets. Along with the Kuswar, the bakery offered coloured loaves of bread—with Christmas colours—red, golden and green. Rich plum cake is made with the essence of pure rum. The fruit used to make the dough is soaked in rum for about a month. The plums, raisins and dry nuts are pre-soaked in rum for about two months. Apart from Christmas delicacies and goodies, the bakeries in the city were offering chocolate, pineapple, butterscotch, strawberry pastries and others.
After the Christmas mass and prayers, many churches and their youth power had organised get-togethers and celebrations with games and skits. Some of the more enterprising in the hospitality scenario held special shows for the revelers. The Christmas celebrations were very proper and within good taste in the region as always seen.
The Christmas story :
This is a summary of the Biblical account of the birth of Jesus. Almost 2,000 years ago a young woman from the town of Nazareth named Mary was visited by an angel named Gabriel. Gabriel told the Jewish woman that she would have a son named Jesus and that he would be the Son of God. At this time, Mary was engaged to her soon-to-be husband Joseph. When told Joseph he was hurt and confused because he did not believe Mary. The angel Gabriel visited Joseph and told him that Mary would be pregnant from the Lord and that she would have a son named Jesus who would save the people from their sins.
Mary and Joseph had to travel to Bethlehem because of an order from the Roman emperor that a census, or record, of all people, be taken in their hometown. After traveling pregnant on a donkey for several days, Mary and Joseph arrived in Bethlehem and were told that there were no places to stay. The inns were full. Seeing that Mary was due at any moment, an owner of an inn told Joseph that they could stay in his stable.
Mary and Joseph settled down on the hay in a stable with animals sleeping. Mary went into labor and Jesus was born in the stable. The only place for the sleeping baby to rest was most likely in the animals trough, known as the manger.
During this time, an angel appeared to shepherds who were watching their flocks in the fields near Bethlehem. The angel told them the good news of the birth of the Savior and Messiah, Jesus Christ. The shepherds immediately went to find baby Jesus, which the angels told them they would find sleeping in the manger.
After some time, three wise men, also known as magi, saw the brilliant star in that sky that rested over where Jesus was born. The three wise men traveled from a far eastern country to find the new king. During the wise king’ trip, Herod the king of Judah met with the wise men and told them to come back and let him know where the baby king was so that he could go worship him as well. The wise men continued to Bethlehem and found Jesus right where the star pointed. They knelt and worshiped the Savior and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.