What is the significance of the Christmas tree? In the old days evergreen branches were used to decorate homes and public buildings to mark the winter solstice. This custom continued and by the early 1600s in many parts of Europe families began to set up these trees in their house and decorate them
In 1824 the American Ambassador to Mexico Joel Poinsett attended a Christmas eve service and save bright red flowers decorating the altar. He loved the flowers so much he took back seeds and shared it with the local churches. The plant got its name from Poinsett.
In 1823 Clement Clarke Moore’s poem “ Twas the night before Christmas” was published. It is possible the legend of the reindeer came into being with this poem.
The story of the poem itself is interesting. It is believed that Moore was a reserved man and a family friend sent a copy of this poem to the New York Sentinel for publication. The condition of publication was that the author would remain anonymous. It was not until 1844 that Moore claimed ownership when the work was included in a book of his poetry.
In the early days of Christianity Christmas was celebrated only by the elergy. It was St. Francis of Assisi who was instrumental in making it a celebration of the people also. He translated many carols from Latin into the local languages and encouraged people to sing these songs as an expression of joy. This custom spread throughout Europe. It was natural progression that people formed groups and went around neighbourhoods singing carols.