Christmas in Afghanistan for natives of Afghanistan is like any other day. The country being 99% Muslim they do not celebrate Christmas in the ways many other parts of the world do. Christmas in Afghanistan is however, not forgotten. On military bases across this war-torn area of the world, you will find Christmas traditions brought to the country by military service men and women.
Christmas in Afghanistan includes Christmas trees set up in mess halls (cafeterias), walls decorated in Christmas cards sent by friends, family, and organizations to the military personnel. Base chaplains help to celebrate Christmas in Afghanistan by offering Christmas services of different forms such as Catholic Masses, gospel services, and non-denominational services.
In some locations base choirs will perform Christmas carols in an attempt to bring Christmas cheer to the brave men and women who will not be able to spend the holidays at home with their families. Many will pray for peace in the area, for their families safe at home, and to be home next Christmas rather than spending Christmas in Afghanistan.
Christmas trees decorated with tinsel and candy canes, surrounded by military personnel in camouflage and guns is far from the traditional Christmases at home. Even candlelight services will not replace Christmas safe and comfortable at home.
As countries such as the United States, Britain, and Italy continue to send troops to Afghanistan there will continue to be thousands of service men and women spending Christmas in Afghanistan. While Afghanistan is about the size of the US state of Texas with climate similar to Michigan Christmas will not be the same for many stationed in Afghanistan.
If you would like to help bring some Christmas cheer to the troops for Christmas in Afghanistan, you might consider sending care packages, cards, and letters. Operation Gratitude is one of many organizations that serve to assist in providing Christmas packages to our troops.
“Operation Gratitude seeks to lift morale and put smiles on faces by sending care packages addressed to individual Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines deployed overseas. Operation Gratitude care packages contain food, hygiene products, entertainment items and personal letters of appreciation, all wrapped with good wishes of love and support.” quoted from Operation Gratitude’s mission statement.
Because of the unsafe conditions due to the war in Afghanistan, it is not recommended anyone attempt spending Christmas in Afghanistan but it would be wonderful if you could provide support and cheer for those who are required to be in the country for Christmas and throughout the rest of the year.
Areas of the world you may enjoy spending Christmas:
Christmas in Bolivia
Christmas in Greenland
Christmas in Australia