26 December, 2017
Officially, the decision had been made by Palestinian leadership to limit celebrations to religious observances, but a number of pundits expressed a common belief that after "days of rage" marked by violent street rallies, people sought to avoid the possibility of a raucous [read dangerous] outpouring and stayed home.
The church was decorated with colourful buntings and balloons and it wore a festive look.
"We all share in the light of Jesus Christ because the Bible tells us that Christ is the light of the world", explains Trinity Presbyterian Pastor Mark Flynn. After the prayers were over, candies and gifts were distributed, particularly to children.
In Hyderabad, the Christian community also celebrated Christmas with the religious fervour and festivity by attending events in the churches and holding parties at their residences.
The celebrations that commenced today will now continue in the beach state till the New Year.
"Last year the celebrations were low-key due to the unrest and were restricted to the spiritual part only". Christmas spreads the message of love and peace.
Hirra Bashir, a teenage Muslim girl who was accompanied by a couple of Muslim girls, said that they were invited by their foreigner friends who are on a visit to Kashmir valley from South Korea.More news: Samsung Notebook 9 Revealed Ahead of 2018 Launch
Nearly all the 29 churches were brightly illuminated and started their first prayer service between 11pm and 11:30pm on Sunday. It was an fantastic experience. "We played different games that we had never even seen or heard of".
Sabyasachi Satpathy, of Big Boss reality show fame, is celebrating Christmas in Mumbai with celebs like Udita Goswami.
Similar prayers were held at other churches including the Saint Joseph's Church in north Kashmir's Baramulla, the oldest Catholic Church in Jammu and Kashmir and at the Church in the tourist resort of Gulmarg. According to several media reports, mostly tourists, including foreigners, prayed inside the church in Gulmarg, gathering there despite the harsh cold and several feet of snow.
Churches all over held special Christmas Eve services Sunday to celebrate the real reason for the season.
Christian community people offering special prayers on the occasion of the Christmas Day on Monday, December 25, 2017. "The preparations actually begin around a month ago".
Michel said that he has celebrated most of his Christmases in Kashmir valley but on a few occasions he has celebrated the festival in other Indian states.
Christmas decorations (top) at St George's Church at Northern Town, Jamshedpur, on Monday. May the spirit of Christmas be the harbinger of prosperity, abundance and peace in your lives.