‘Genna’ Ethiopian Christmas—Birth of Jesus Christ

Christmas in Ethiopia is unique compared to the rest of the world which is mainly getting together and sharing gift among family and friends; gift sharing is a rare activity in Ethiopia, of course it is practical in bigger towns than in the rural area.

Christmas–‘Ledet or Genna’ in Amharic is an occasion where people on the eve of the actual day will go to the respective churches wearing a complete White cotton clothes and attend the procession for the whole night in the church.

On the 7th of January every year, Genna, the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, will take place overwhelmingly in all part of the country; going to Lalibela for this occasion is a good idea as it is especially celebrated due to the fact that King Lalibela’s birthday is on the same day.

The next day people will get together as it is feast day after 40 days of fasting time (Not eating until late afternoon everyday and not eating any animal products at all for 40 days). The fun side of Genna in Ethiopia is the traditional game called Genna, played by kicking small wooden ball with nicely designed stick, it is played mainly by Men and it seems like modern day Hockey.

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