The Christmas Eve Supper or Sviata Vecheria (Holy Supper) brings the family together to partake in special foods and begin the holiday with many customs and traditions, which reach back to antiquity. The rituals of the Christmas Eve are dedicated to God, to the welfare of the family, and to the remembrance of the ancestors. Christmas meal traditionally includes 12 dishes, and each dish is dedicated to one of Christ's Apostles. Girls read cards to learn about the intended and hold mysteries to see the future.
It is believed that heavens open on this night and all ground waters have healing power, and if someone makes a wish, it must come true. There is a tradition to go in the field and watch the sky: people living saintly lives will see celestial beauties.
On this day ForUm has asked politicians and public people what would they wish Ukrainians:
Bohdan Beniuk, national artist of Ukraine, MP ("Svoboda"):
- Wise people recommend to make a wish on this day for God to give health, love and strong spirit.
I wish all those who celebrate this holiday with kutya and go round carol-singing to preserve the spirit of the holiday and positive mood. Singing Christmas carols in all sincerity is magic, and those who know how to do this deserve to hold the title of the patriot. May Christ protect you.
Olha Herasimiuk, former MP, TV journalist:
- May Christmas bring all Ukrainians happiness and relief for people to be strong in their fight for decent life, and I mean not only Maidan, but every battle people fight every day with their souls. I traditionally celebrate Christmas in my native land, Poltava region, with my mother, sister and friends. For us it is time to gather and discuss the past year and make plans for the next one.
Andriy Pavlovski, MP ("Batkivshchyna"):
- I wish all Ukrainian families wellbeing, health and prosperity. I hope that this year will be easier, that economic and political problems will be resolved and Ukraine will face hopeful prospect.
Bishop Evstratiy Zorya, head of the information publishing department of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Kyiv Patriarchy:
- I wish people more understanding, trust and respect to each other. We have many political, economic and social problems, but deficit of trust is the biggest problem. On this spiritual holiday we have a good opportunity to analyze our relations, think about sanctity and spiritual values.
Volodymyr Tsybulko, political scientist, poet, philosopher:
- Christmas is a family holiday for me, where there is an opportunity to forget about politics and economy and stay with the family. I wish Ukrainians to focus on their families. Socialization is good, but this time must be dedicate to the dears.
Oleh Skrypka, leader of the band "Vopli Vidopliasova":
- Happy New Year and Merry Christmas. I wish you happiness, health, inspiration and prosperity! And I invite everyone to celebrate Christmas together in "Kraina Mryi", which will take place on January 5 and 7 in Cossack village "Mamayeva sloboda"! It's gonna be fun.
Lesya Orobets, MP ("Batkivshchyna"):
- Christmas is a family holiday for me, and I wish Ukrainians family happiness, prosperity and peace. I hope we will overcome the difficulties, and Ukrainian families will not have to part for years just become someone is forced to become a migrant worker. May God give us strength and humility to realize good deeds.
Oleksandr Okhrymenko, president of Ukrainian analytical center:
- Christmas is a family holiday for me, no matter where we celebrate it. I wish these holidays be full of light and happiness to set a good mood for the whole year.
Roman Bezsmertnyi, former head of the President's Administration:
- For me Christmas holiday differs from New Year celebrations. On Christmas days I think about my place in life, my fate, my plans and hopes for the future. I wish all your dreams and plans come true.
Pavlo Rozenko, MP ("UDAR"):
- Christmas is a religious and family holiday. On these days we should focus on the family and dears. On these day every person thinks about spiritual and moral values. On these every person, from the President on out to ordinary Ukrainian, must sum up the results of the passed years and plan his future. That's what the Bible says.
Andriy Kurkov, writer:
- On New Year and Christmas I wish all Ukrainians optimism and faith in European future of Ukraine.
Volodymyr Bondarenko, MP ("Batkivshchyna"):
- I wish people peace and confidence in Ukraine's future. I wish Ukrainians live in the rich and peaceful country, where the state and people think and care about the same things, where every Ukrainian family feels confident about the future.
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