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Decorating with holly doesn’t suddenly make one a Pagan, nor does using the word Christmas make one a Christian.

Pagans in what is now Poland used to hang evergreen branches from their ceilings and decorate them as well.

, usually an evergreen tree decorated with apples, and used as a prop for Christian mystery (or miracle) plays.

Another more logical tale (how does a Mexican child get to the baby Jesus?

) tells of a young boy who brought weeds to a Christmas Eve mass as an offering, where they too turned into poinsettias.

December 24 was the old feast day of Adam and Eve so they were often around near Christmas.

German families also used to build , which were wooden frames often decorated with evergreen branches, fruit, and gifts.

Take holy water and sprinkle it in these shrines, build altars and place relics in them . The “kissing bush” was first popularized in the late 18th Century and originally contained more than mistletoe.

Holly, evergreens, fruit, and mistletoe were often bunched together and then hung over doorways to instigate kissing.

(Yes, contains the words “God bless us everyone” but it’s not Jesus who comes to visit Ebenezer Scrooge.)It doesn’t matter where our holiday customs come from, but it’s fascinating (and fun) to trace their various origins.

Some of them are only a few hundred years old or less, and some are literally thousands of years old.

(4) The first “Christmas Tree” dates back to the early 1520’s in Germany and spread from there, becoming popular in the United States and Britain during the Nineteenth Century.

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