Merry Christmas! History of Eastern Celebration January 7 + FULL Text Christmas message of Pope Francis to Oriental Christians

Christmas is celebrated on January 7, 2021 for those following the Julian Calendar. This applies to many Eastern Orthodox Churches and Eastern Rite Catholic Church. There is a custom is to refrain from meat on Christmas Eve. The Julian calendar was also used in Europe until 1582 and in England until 1752. The Gregorian calendar replaced the Julian. Pope Gregory XIII introduced this calendar which corrected some inaccuracies of astronomy. The Julian Calendar is 13 days behind and the Gregorian. Russian, Serbian, Macedonian, Coptic, Georgian, Ukranian follow this date for Christmas. Most American Orthodox follow the Revised Julian Calendar which uses Dec. 25. 

On Twitter Pope Francis wrote: "I extend my affection to the brothers and sisters of the Oriental Churches, Catholic and Orthodox, who celebrate the Nativity of the Lord today. To them, I wish them a Holy Christmas in the light of Christ our peace and our hope!"