Christmas with the Monchhichis
it is a tradition, that a child has an "Advent
calendar" (in german: "Adventkalender").
It is a calendar with 24 windows, which should be opened by the child from December 1 till December 24.
Every window contents a candy. The Monchhichis look forward to open a window everyday.
In Germany most families
have an “Advent wreath” (in german:
It is a wreath out of fir twigs and decoration material plus 4 candles.
The 4 candles stands for the last 4 Sundays before christmas (December 24).
During those 4 weeks before christmas, the candles can be lighted up, but only one per Sunday.
That means in the first week only one candle can be lighted up and
after the second Sunday in the second week a second candle can be lightend up and so on.
Some historians are of the opinion, that a german protestant pastor and a pioneer in urban mission work named
Johann Hinrich Wichern (1808–1881) was the inventor of the modern Advent wreath.
During Advent, children at the mission school “Rauhes Haus“, founded by Wichern in Hamburg,
would ask daily if Christmas had arrived.
In 1839, he built a large wooden ring (made out of an old cartwheel) with 19 small red and 4 large white candles.
A small candle was lit successively every weekday during Advent.
On Sundays, a large white candle was lit.
The custom gained ground among Protestant churches in Germany and evolved into the smaller wreath with four or five candles known today.
Roman Catholics in Germany began to adopt the custom in the 1920s,
and in the 1930s it spread to North America.
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