Coptic Orthodox - Egypt Christmas

By Lily Smith

Coptic Orthodox - Egypt Christmas

Hi There!

Today I have gathered and put together a presentation all about Coptic Orthodox Day.


What is the purpose of the celebration?

  • Religious Festival for the 15% of Christians
  • Belong to the Coptic Orthodox Church

What is the history of the celebration?

  • was first celebrated in 642
  • became a holiday in 2002 as an official holiday
  • origin legend traced back to Mark
  • commemorates Moses
  • christmas trees used to be palm tree

When is this celebrated?

  • advent- between 40-45 days before the celebration (November 20-30 through January 6)
  • celebration is held on January 7
Christmas Eve Mass at Saint Mark's Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Cairo

What are some traditional foods?

  • vegan diet during advent
Christmas Day:
  • meat, eggs, butter
  • fata- lamb soup
  • kahk (sweet biscuits)
  • shortbat (celebration drink)
  • zalabia- pastry
  • bouri- fish dish


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What are the colors associated with this celebration?

  • green- holly, ivy, mistletoe
  • red- holly berries, apples (from palms... Adam's fall)
  • white- paper on palm trees, cloth on alter
  • blue- Mary (mother of Jesus)
  • ADVENT- blue and purple (MAIN COLORS)

Is there any special cloths associated with this holiday?

  • PRIEST- ceremonial clothes
  • FAITHFUL- newest clothes

Is there any special decorations to celebrate?

  • Christmas tree
  • Manger
  • Lights
  • Other American Christmas Decor

What are some other traditions?

  • kahk - given as gifts ; replacement for Christmas cookie
  • Santa - Baba Noel (father Christmas)
  • Service is from 11pm to 4am with the ringing of bells
  • gifts - sweets, El'Aida
  • broadcast all over Egypt
  • artificial snow on trees

What are some other traditions?

  • even though different religions celebrate differently, many of the food traditions are the same
  • to reduce disturbances during prayer, the security is much tighter

Thank You!

Thank you for watching my presentation over Egyptian Christmas. I hope you enjoyed it and found it interesting as did I.