Merry Christmas! (No, Not Late: Russian Orthodoxs are Just Now Celebrating It)

Due to differences between the West's Gregorian and the Orthodox calendars, the Russian Orthodox church has is just today (January 7, 08) celebrating Christmas.

Daniel Corrigan of Citypages has a slideshow of the Christmas Eve services in northeast Minneapolis. - Thanks Jeff Shaw!

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I can understand if you don't necessarily believe that Christ is divine. OK, that is an article of faith which not everyone will believe... I'm not big into prosletyzing -- people should read and decide for themselves without being pestered and annoyed by me or anyone else.

Where I am taken back is that it sounds like you are questioning the existence of the historical person Jesus, though. Is my understanding accurate? How do you discount the contemporary secular discussions of Christ & his followers in Roman (pagan) and Jewish texts -- Tacitus, Josephus, et al? These accounts didn't come from Christ's followers or anyone who in any way believed in His divinity -- in contrast, they came from those whose best interest would be sevred by them denying his existence entirely -- if that wese at all plausible (which apparently it wasn't!). Why did they report on his life and doings (along with those of his follwers) if that was all a myth? Were Herod the Great and Herod Agrippa both myths as well? How about the Roman procurator Pilate?

Believe it or not, there are actually was real history being recorded 2000 years ago... Julius Caesar, Cicero, Alexander the Great, Aristotle, &c. were not myths either. I'll leave theology out of it, but anyone denying history so blatantly is obviously hasn't read much of it. The Romans were brutal, but they kept pretty darned good records.

There are bibical scholars (Bart Ehrman comes to mind, but there are probably others ... wiki him) who are themselves agnostic, but don't dispute the existence of Jesus the man. They either don't know or don't think he was God, but know he was real. You would do well to look into that a little.
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Who cares what they're celebrating, they're all bloody myths. This "jesus" person was supposedly born in the spring, but they moved his "mythological" birth to december/january to push the pagan winter solstice celebrations out of the way.

I've been touched my his noodley appendage.

BTW, the orthodox christians still do use the Julian calandar, as opposed to the slightly more modern gregorian calendar.
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Orthodox (and not just Russian, either) Christmas is celebrated 13 days later on account of the Julian calendar behind currently 13 days behind the Gregorian calendar. In another hundred years or s, though, they will have slipped another day and will celebrate on January 8th. This is because the Julian year is 365 days whilst the Gregorian is ~365.25 days. As the years go on, the calendars get frther and further appart (which is the reason for Gregory fixing the calendar in the first place -- Christmas would eventually wind up in the Spring).

Epihany is a different holiday ENTIRELY and commemorates the Magi's visit of Christ. In the Western Church, it is celebrated on January 6th of teh Greogorian calendar. Orthodox Churches celebrate it on January 6th also, but it's January 6th of the Julian calendar; again, on the Gregorian calendar most of us use, it's 13 days later, January 19th.

It is unfortunate that the closeness of Western Epiphany to Orthodox Christmas causes the confusion, but Christmas for both celebrates the birth of Christ, whilst Epiphany celebrates the wise men's visit.
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No, Orthodox Christmas is not the same as Epiphany ("Three Kings" Day). This is a common misunderstanding. It has to do with the 13-day difference between the Julian and Gregorian calendars. Orthodox Epiphany (or Theophany) is also 13 days later, on Jan. 19.
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I'm pretty sure Tim is right. They're celebrating the Day of the Three Kings or whatever. Different event, different date, same calendars.
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