Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Finnish Christmas

H/t to Miriam from Finland. I thought it was too good to get buried in the comments. Here is what Miriam wrote:

It's all about 24th, from noon on, when the declaration of Christmas peace is given in Turku. It is quite important for those who live in Turku, but also all over Finland. It can be watched in Tv or listened in radio. After that, churches are bursted with people, because almost everyone wants to attend a Christmas afternoon/Eve service. Even more people visit graveyards, decorating graves with candles. It is important to go to sauna at some point before dinner and gifts. Quite a busy day :-)

UPDATE: Here are the words of the military march that is played last, courtesy of Wikipedia:

Sons of a race whose blood was shed,
On Narva's field; on Poland's sand; at Leipzig; Lützen's dark hills under;
Not yet is Finland's manhood dead;
With foemen's blood a field may still be tinted red!
All Rest, all Peace, Away! begone!
The tempest loosens; lightnings flash; and o'er the field the cannon thunder
Rank upon rank, march on! march on!
The spirit of each father brave looks on as brave a son.

No nobler aim
Could light us to the field;
Our swords are flame;
Nor new our blood to yield;
Forward each man, brave and bold!
Lo! the glorious path of Freedom, centuries old!

Gleam high! Thou banner Victory-sealed!
In the grey bygone days, long since, all battle-worn,
Be still our splendid colours, though tattered, onward borne!
Of Finland's ancient Standard there's yet a shred untorn!
H/t to Housewife from Finland


  1. I watched the video and loved the pomp and ceremony!

  2. Yes, and the winter is so beautiful! I wish we had snow for Christmas but no luck this year...

  3. Housewife from FinlandDecember 23, 2015 at 5:06 AM

    Now this was nice. :)

    BTW, the song they play last is the second famous finnish military march. It is president's honorary march and such. So first the Christmas Peace is declared and then military march is played. In the lyrics one sings for example: "All Rest, all Peace, Away! begone!" I find it rather ironic.

    If you are interested, english lyrics can be found here:

    But Christmas Peace to all of you! I always like to wish Christmas Peace rather than Merry Christmas.

  4. Thanks Sanne! :-)

    I'm currently in Estonia, though. Here are some Estonian customs I found online:

  5. Housewife, I don't think it at all ironic. The reason we have peace is because there are men who fought and died for it and are still ready to do so, something which affluent Western nations tend to forget. The Finnish don't, evidently. I'll update the post with the words, thanks for the link.

    Miriam, very interesting, I'll read on it when I have time, thanks1