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Christmas in Poland - commercial, religious, family get together or what?


Wroclaw Boy
20 Nov 2012 #1
Seems to me that Christmas in the developed World has become nothing but a money spinner and a sure way to fcuk up your children for life. The children dont care about the religious aspect and/or family, all they care about is the presents.

I used to enjoy visiting my wifes family in Poland for christmas, it was about the occasion and solid core family values, good food lots of banter, the celebration of family.

Now in the UK its about presents and boosting the economy in terms of people buying loads of useless crap.
berni23 7 | 379
20 Nov 2012 #2
Fortunately i will be getting drunk on some beach in South East Asia.
Cant stand the Xmess preperations already.
rybnik 18 | 1,462
20 Nov 2012 #3
Now in the UK its about presents and boosting the economy in terms of people buying loads of useless crap.

same here :(
poland_
20 Nov 2012 #4
Now in the UK its about presents and boosting the economy in terms of people buying loads of useless crap.

The march of secularism means Britain may no longer be a Christian country in just 20 years, according to a recent report, although the ring of tills will always replace the ring of bells.
OP Wroclaw Boy
21 Nov 2012 #5
although the ring of tills will always replace the ring of bells.

Coke a cola have started their usual unbelievably aggresive BS Christmas advertising campaign in that they are indeed responsbile for all good times even father christmas is on Coke didnt you know.


  • coke and christmas, be a fat fcuker like me

  • lovely jubily

  • drink coke and become a fat fcuker like me hoo ho

  • I'm fat cos i drink coke
pam
21 Nov 2012 #6
Now in the UK its about presents and boosting the economy in terms of people buying loads of useless crap.

Too true unfortunately.
Shops and supermarkets are full of Xmas stuff, non-stop Xmas ads and same old, same old boring Xmas songs on the radio ( although i bet Slade are rubbing their hands with glee at this time of year )

One of the nicest Christmases i had was in Poland 3 years ago. Nobody had presents, and it was definitely all about family being together. It was such a nice change from a commercial English Xmas.

Personally, i've never understood why people spend a small fortune on gifts, put themselves in debt, and food shop like they're preparing for the aftermath of a nuclear war! All this for just one day. Total madness.

This year i'm spending Wigilia with friends. No-one is buying presents, we're all just looking forward to having a nice day enjoying each others company.

I much prefer a Polish to an English Xmas.
rybnik 18 | 1,462
21 Nov 2012 #7
One of the nicest Christmases i had was in Poland

Me too!
Back in the day during PRL I spent my first 3 Wigilias na Śląsku.
It was a serene time.
The emphasis was on family, food and Jesus' birth.
Those are among the best memories I have from that time
pip 10 | 1,661
21 Nov 2012 #8
Poland is just as commercial as any other country- Last Christmas played on the radio in October. I haven't been to a mall in a while but no doubt the decorations are out.

In my world Christmas is about family, because I am an athiest, and all our family lives in Canada, so I quite enjoy our Polish Canadian xmas.
polonius 54 | 420
21 Nov 2012 #9
Althouhg the traditonal asepcts (wigilia, opłatek, kolędy, pasterka) are still holding on, the bulk of Xmas activities in Poland are mainly geared to...make China richer.

One positive change from the commie days, however, is the growth of charitable activites. Owsiak's Christmas Charity Orchestra is the best known, but a new drive called 'Szlachetna Paczka' is growing in popularity. There are also many other foundations and groups helping the needy at Christmas time.
jon357 63 | 15,110
21 Nov 2012 #10
Christmas in Poland - commercial, religious, family get together or what?

All three, and why not?
InWroclaw 89 | 1,915
21 Nov 2012 #11
I confirm the trees are up in some malls, eg Renoma, the market square Rynek etc although I think the formal switch on is Saturday.

I do not believe in any religion in the slightest but also think in many countries Xmas is simply perpetuated by commercial interests and not enough focus is on the need to stop, pause, appreciate nature and the good people a person (hopefully) has in their life. I also think of those without caring families and whose life has led them to desperate times such as alcoholism or homelessness -- it must be even more painful for them to see others' enjoyment of the festive period when their own life is in chaos. Xmas is also a very difficult time for the newly bereaved and people who are elderly, disabled or ill.
berni23 7 | 379
21 Nov 2012 #12
One positive change from the commie days, however, is the growth of charitable activites.

Thats the only positive aspect of Xmess. When im in the country, i work at the food kitchen in a homeless shelter and donate lots of stuff.

Too bad that i get into that mood once a year only.
InWroclaw 89 | 1,915
21 Nov 2012 #13
i work at the food kitchen in a homeless shelter and donate lots of stuff.

Could you give me the Polish phrase for that so I can find them via Google and email them please? I am probably going to be in another part of Poland at Xmas this year and would like at least some hours to be spent doing that sort of work. I registered at the volunteer place months ago but they never contacted me, although in fairness they did say they probably wouldn't have much for an English speaker.
berni23 7 | 379
21 Nov 2012 #14
Working in the kitchen should be fine without language skills.
We even have an American church, where i worked as a driver.
Maybe they have something similar in Poland.

My Polish is a bit rusty:
homeless shelter = schronisko dla bezdomnych?
charity work = praca charytatywna?

I dont remember the word for "donate".
InWroclaw 89 | 1,915
21 Nov 2012 #15
Thanks Berni, will see if they want me here.

And of course, hats off to you for the good work :o)
goofy_the_dog
21 Nov 2012 #16
Well I live in the Uk for a long time now, and we are still carrying the Ppolish Traditions with us, we are also Roman Catholic.

So mum starts preparing for the Christmas Eve, me and dad are storming the Polish shops for majonez kielecki, kapusta, barsz bialy etc...
When my mother dissapears in the mist of steam in the kitchen, preparing the 12 dishes for the Supper.
We set up everything nicely on the table, always living an empty dish for a guest. We have a CD of the most beautiful Piolish carols by Mazowsze.

Then me and my gfather are going tto the garden to spot the foirst Star which in an old tradition is the Betlehem Star. This gives us a start to the Supper. Me or my father read a a paragraph from the Bible, then we say prayers. We always have some hay on the table and couple of wafer, we take the wafers and we go to each and wish each other some stuff like have a happy year, go to collge more often etc hahah, for each wish the other person takes a bit of a waer and eats it. When we finish with that we start eating, all of us hav to at leats try all twelve dishes because it brings luck and a good following year. Then we stand up from the table and go to open up the presents that "The Santa Claus" brought. After all of that we stay a bit longer than usual and gfo to sleep, we wake up at about 23:30 and we go on Pasterka to the Church.

Cheers
InWroclaw 89 | 1,915
21 Nov 2012 #17
Goofy, I find all that interesting and I know a lot of forum readers who are unaccustomed to Polish traditions would also enjoy reading your post.

I don't believe in any of that religious stuff at all, but I can appreciate the atmosphere and special memories created when friends or families sit down and spend time together for an event in their calendar. I think that's well worth having, priceless really.
berni23 7 | 379
21 Nov 2012 #18
majonez kielecki, kapusta, barsz bialy etc...

So the no meat tradition is still alive? Do you guys have fish?
I guess thats what bumped me most culinary wise. :D
On the other hand, some non practicing german protestants have vienna sausages and potato salad(same as you get at a fast food joint). urgh
InWroclaw 89 | 1,915
21 Nov 2012 #19
Do you guys have fish?

Some Poles enjoy carp I believe. An acquired taste, to put it delicately.
berni23 7 | 379
21 Nov 2012 #20
Yeah, a traditional Polish Christian meal has lots of fish(because of the symbol of Christianity i guess).
But i always missed a decent roast. ;)
goofy_the_dog
21 Nov 2012 #21
Yes on the 24 we do not eat meat, it carp all the waayy!!
Personally I really enjoy carp! I love pierogi z kapusta with barszcz czerwony yum yum, I am hungry now :(

Cheers
polonius 54 | 420
22 Nov 2012 #22
I dont remember the word for "donate".

podarować = to donate
dar = gift, donation
cow
25 Jan 2013 #23
I used to enjoy visiting

you are just getting old wb


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