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Network211 Shares "Around the World Christmas" Video

Network211 has released an inaugural Christmas video that shares how Christmas is celebrated in other countries, with this first year looking at Spain, Australia, and Israel.
It may be easy for some Americans to forget that Christmas — specifically the celebration of Christ’s birth — is a season recognized and celebrated around the world, not just in the United States.

However, Network211 has produced a 24-minutes video, Around the World Christmas, that takes a look at how three countries overseas celebrate Christmas, including Spain, Australia, and Israel.

The first country’s Christmas traditions that are explored is Spain. Kevin and Karen Prevost, AG missionaries to Spain for 38 years, share about the many traditions that surround Christmas in this western European country — some traditions that may be quite a surprise.

One of the most unusual Christmas “surprises” that nearly the entire nation of Spain participates in is El Gordo, which is a national lottery with prizes valuing up to two billion euros (roughly $2.2 billion dollars). Feasts, Nativities, Christmas light displays, and eating grapes at midnight (that’s right, grapes at midnight!) are also among the traditions of Spain.

Mark Flattery, president of Network211 and who lived in Melbourne, Australia, then shares about the Australian Christmas culture. One of the most important observations he makes is that due to Australia’s location in the southern hemisphere, December is a summertime month, so that impacts Christmas activities — no building a snowman here!

In describing the many different events that take place during the Christmas season in Australia, one point that Flattery shares is that 43.9% of Australians consider themselves Christians, while nearly 38.9% self-identify as having no religion at all. So, while one group is celebrating Christmas with worship and family and love, the other group is focused on activities, family, and love.

In the final section, Amy Flattery, the director of the Center for Holy Lands Studies and Mark’s wife, presents the traditions of Israel. Having spent years living and studying in Israel, she’s very familiar with the Christmas traditions where Jesus lived.

Amy provides a guided video tour of places such as Jerusalem, Bethlehem, and Nazareth as well as key religious sites and explains their significance in light of Christmas. She also explains the celebration of Hanukkah and its traditions.

An inaugural episode, Mark hopes to expand Around the World Christmas to includes more countries every year.

“While other countries may have different and even surprising traditions for celebrating Christmas,” Mark says, “the fact remains, they’re still celebrating the birth of the child, Jesus Christ!”

Dan Van Veen

Dan Van Veen is news editor of AG News. Prior to transitioning to AG News in 2001, Van Veen served as managing editor of AG U.S. Missions American Horizon magazine for five years. He attends Central Assembly of God in Springfield, Missouri, where he and his wife, Lori, teach preschool Sunday School and 4- and 5-year-old Rainbows boys and girls on Wednesdays.