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Christmas in Malta - Christmas Around the World

Updated on June 27, 2011

Christmas Around the World - Malta Christmas Traditions

Christmas in Malta and neighboring island, Gozo, is an important religious holiday. It is called 'II-Milied'. The majority of inhabitants of Malta and Gozo are Roman Catholics. On Christmas eve, most people attend Midnight Mass.

During this special Midnight Mass, a child is chosen for "Priedka tat-Tifel", which means preaching of the child. This lucky child delivers the sermon during the Christmas Eve Midnight Mass. They tell the story of Jesus and Bethlehem, and also add their own personal message.

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Maltese Christmas Traditions - Malta Nativity Cribs

One of the oldest Malta Christmas traditions is Malta crib displays. These Maltese cribs were first displayed in Malta by monks. At first, the Maltese didn't accept the tradition. But today, Catholic churches in Malta display a nativity crib built by members of the church.

The Maltese crib is called 'Presepju'. It is surrounded and adorned with figures representing angels, animals, and shepherds, called 'pasturi'. The Maltese Christmas cribs are surrounded by a setting with lights, plants, and buildings. Often flour windmills are present in the nativity scene. Many houses also display the pasturi and baby Jesus.

At midnight during mass on Christmas eve, a figure representing the baby Jesus is placed into the Maltese nativity crib. The three Magi are placed in the Maltese cribs during Epiphany. One crib dating back to the 1600s is still displayed every Christmas in Malta.

Traditional Malta Christmas Traditions - Malta Christmas Decorations and Maltese Christmas Food

Another of the oldest Christmas traditions in Malta is a Christmas eve procession. It was started in the early 1900s by a priest to keep the spirit of Christmas alive on the island. The Christmas parade always begins with a full size baby Jesus figure being carried along. The procession route is lit by many lights called festunis all along the way so that everyone can clearly see the baby Jesus.

Wreaths and Christmas trees are common Malta Christmas decorations, just like in other areas of the world. Many houses also put Christmas candles in their windows and light up their houses at night with lights during Christmas. Santa Claus also visits the children, and is a popular Maltese Christmas tradition.

Popular Malta Christmas food items are turkey, puddings, mincemeat pies, ring cakes made with honey, and Italian fruit bread.

Christmas in Malta Photos

Christmas in Malta
Christmas in Malta | Source
Malta Christmas Traditions
Malta Christmas Traditions | Source
Christmas Around the World - Malta
Christmas Around the World - Malta | Source

Christmas in Malta - Christmas Around the World Comments

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    • penpro007 profile image

      penpro007 6 years ago from Online

      Hi, great hub. I am Maltese, thanks for the positive comments about Malta :)

    • MPG Narratives profile image

      Marie Giunta 7 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Christmas is beautiful and here is Australia its hot because its our summer. Thanks for telling us about Christmas in Malta, sounds lovely too.

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

      That is a wonderfully written hub with beautiful pictures.

    • TheListLady profile image

      TheListLady 7 years ago from New York City

      I do like knowing what the rest of the world is doing - and this sounds lovely.

      Thanks for putting this together and allowing me to be an armchair traveler - which is fun!

      Rated up! Yay!

    • Angela Harris profile image

      Angela Harris 7 years ago from Around the USA

      PaperNotes, Yes, I agree. There just is something about Christmas time that make the world seem more beautiful.

      lyjo, Yes, Malta is beautiful. I would love to spend a Christmas there. And I agree- peace year round would be nice.

    • lyjo profile image

      lyjo 7 years ago

      Seems like a beautiful place,

      Wish we could have the peace we have at Christmas always...thanks

    • PaperNotes profile image

      PaperNotes 7 years ago

      Oh, Christmas is already getting near and I am already excited. I don't know exactly why but the air during Christmas is something that warms my heart.