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圣诞节习俗与圣诞音乐

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  Millions of Americans will celebrate Christmas on December twenty-fifth.。 It is the most widely celebrated religio。us holiday in the Unite。d States.

  People buy gifts t。o give to family members and friends. They fill homes and stores with evergreen1 trees and bright, color。ed lights. They go to parties and prepare special Christmas food. Many people think Chri。stmas is the most wonderful time o。f the year.

  Many Christians go to church the night before the holiday。 or on Christmas。 Da。y. They celebrate Christmas as the birthday of Jesus Christ. Christian2 mini。sters3 speak abo。ut the need for pe。ace and understanding in the。 world. This is the spirit。ual4 message of Christmas. Church services include traditional religious songs for the holiday. One of the most popular is "Silent Night."

  Many other American。s celebrate Christmas as an important, but non-religious holida。y. To all, however, it is a special day of family, f。ood, a。nd exchanging gifts.

  Christmas is probably the most special day of t。he ye。ar for children. One thin。g that makes it special is the popular tradition of Santa Claus5.

  Young children believe that Santa Claus。 is a fat, kind, old man in a red suit with white fur. They believe that-on the night before Christmas-he travels through the air in a sleigh6 pulled by reindeer7. He enters。 e。ach house from the top by s。liding down the hole in the fireplace8. He l。ea。ves gifts fo。r the。 children u。nder。 the Christmas tree.

  Americans spend a lot o。f time and money buying Christmas presents. The average American family spends about 800 dollars. Stores and shopping ce。nters are crowded at th。is time of year. More than 20% of goods sold during the year are sold during the weeks before C。hristmas. This is good for stores and for the Americ。an economy.

  Some people object to spending all this money. They say it is not the real m。eaning of Christmas. So, they celebrate in other ways. For example, they。 make Christma。s presents, instead of buying the。m. Or they volunteer to help serve meals to people who have no homes. Or they give money to organizations that help poor people in the United States。 and around the world.

  Home and family are the center of the Christmas holiday. For many people, the。 most enjoyable tradition i。s buying a Christmas tree and decorating9 it with lights and beautiful objects. On Christmas Eve or Christmas morning, people gather around the tree to ope。n their presents。.

  Another impo。rtant Christmas tradition involves food. Families prepare many kinds of holiday foods, especially sweets. They eat these foods。 on the night before Christmas and on Christmas day.

  For many people, Christm。as means traveling long distances to be with their families. Another Christmas tra。dition is to go "caroling10."A group of people walk along the street。. At each house, they stop and sing a




Christmas song, called carol. Student groups also sing carols at schools and shopping centers.

   Not everyone。 in the United States celebrates Christmas. Members of the Jewish11。 and。 Muslim12 religions, for example, generally do not. Yet many Americans do take part in some of the tradit。ional performance。s of t。he

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