ASIA/JORDAN - Christians of the Hashemite Kingdom have been celebrating Christmas together for forty years

Amman - This year marks the fortieth anniversary of the unification of the date on which all the Churches and Christian communities in Jordan celebrate Christmas. In 1975, the heads of Christian Churches agreed to celebrate Christmas on December 25, according to the Gregorian calendar, while Easter is celebrated by all Christians according to the Julian calendar.
Jordan is currently the only Country in the world where the two main Christian feasts are celebrated together by all the baptized. Such fact, which is a source of pride for the Christians of the Kingdom, provides opportunity for some interesting reflection for Fr. Rifat Bader, director of the Catholic Center for Studies and Media. "What is" asks Father Bader "the importance of unifying these holidays?" And he adds, quoting St. Paul: "There is only one Christ, one baptism, one Lord. So why aren’t Christian holidays celebrated on the same day? "
In Jordan, Christmas has been a national holiday since 1999, the year King Abdullah II ascended to the throne.
The comparison on the opportunity to unify the dates of the liturgical solemnities currently celebrated on different days from different Churches and communities of the baptized was stressed especially when, in May 2014, Coptic Orthodox Patriarch Tawadros II sent a letter to Pope Francis, one year after their meeting in the Vatican, which contained also the incentive to unify the date of the Easter celebration .