Holidays in Russia

January 1 - New Year's Day. The New Year holiday is very popular, especially with children. In every house there is a firtree. The presents are supposed to be sent by Father Frost (Santa Claus) and the Snow Maiden. People usually see the New Year in sitting round a festive table. They are addressing New Year's greetings and good wishes to one another. They are raising their wineglasses filled with sparkling champagne. January 7 - Christmas.

The Russian Christmas is celebrated on the 7th of January. The holiday is connected with the wonderful birth of Jesus Christ as it is described in the Holy Bible. On that day, about 2000 years ago, Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem. When Jesus was born, wise men from the East came to worship him. They gave the Child presents - gold, frankincense and myrrh. That's why people nowadays try to please their friends and relatives giving them Christmas presents. Easter. Easter is a very popular holiday in Russia in commemoration of the resurrection of Jesus. Easter has no fixed date.

It is held on the first Sunday after the date of the first full moon that occurs on or after March 21. Here is how the Holy Bible describes Jesus Christ's resurrection: "Suddenly there was a great earthquake; and the angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone from the door of the tomb and sat on it. And the angel said, 'I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he is risen." That's why people nowadays greet each other on the Easter day by the words "Christ is risen!" And the expected answer is "He is risen indeed!" People also paint eggs and give them to one another as a symbol of eternal life. March 8 - Women's Day. This is the day of paying tribute to women. On March 8, men give women flowers and presents, and do all the domestic work around the house and in the kitchen. 'In some countries this day is called Mother's Day and is celebrated in spring. Yumorina. Yumorina is April Fools' Day and takes place on April 1. On this day you can meet someone who will try to pull your leg. Even if he fools you, you aren't showing signs of bad temper. Otherwise, people will suspect you of the worst possible sin-a lack of humour.

There are many national holidays in Russia, when people all over the country do not work have special celebrations. The major holidays are: New Year's Day, Women's Day, May Day, Victory Day and Independence Day. The first holiday of the year is New Year's Day. People see the new year in at midnight to the 31st of December. They greet the new year with champagne and listen to the Kremlin chimes beating 12 o'clock. There are lost of New Year traditions in Russia. In every home there is a New Year tree glittering with coloured lights and decorations.

Children always wait for Father Frost to come and give them a present. Many people consider New Year's Day to be a family holiday. But the young prefer to have New Year parties of their own. A renewed holiday in our country is Christmas. It is celebrated on the 7th of January. It's a religious holiday and a lot of people go to church services on that day. On the 8th of March we celebrate Women's Day when men are supposed to do everything about the house and cook all the meals. The greatest national holiday in our country is Victory Day. On the 9th of May, 1945, the Soviet Army and its allies completely defeated the German fascists and the Second World War and the Great Patriotic War ended. This year we celebrated the 50th anniversary of this great event. A magnificent memorial on Poklonnaya Gora has been built to commemorate the Victory. Many veterans took part in the military parade and laid wreaths on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

All stood in silence for a minute. Radio and television broadcast popular war songs all day long. A lot of guest from different countries of the world came to Moscow to participate in the celebrations. Independence Day is a new holiday in our country. On the 12th of June, 1992, the first President of Russia was elected. We also celebrate Day of the Defender of Motherland on the 23d of February, Easter, Day of knowledge and lots of professional holidays.

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