Christmas in Ghana

People in Ghana celebrate Christmas from the 20th of December to the first week in January with lots of different activities. Many people travel to visit their relatives and friends in other parts of the country. Over 66 languages are spoken in Ghana and all these language groups have their own traditions and customs!

December is also the start of the cocoa harvest (the bean that makes chocolate) in Ghana. Ghana is the worlds second biggest cocoa producer. (I really like some fair-trade chocolate that's made with cocoa from Ghana!)

Christmas Eve night is the time when the celebrations really start with Church services that have drumming and dancing. Children often put on a Nativity Play or other drama. Then choirs come out to sing and people come out in front of the priests to dance. Songs are mostly sung in the languages that the people understand best. This makes them feel that God speaks their language. Sometimes these services and dancing go on all night long!

Other people celebrate Christmas Eve with fireworks and parties.

On Christmas Day the Churches are very full. People come out dressed in their colorful traditional clothes. After the Church service on Christmas morning, people quickly go back to their houses to start giving and receiving gifts.

Traditional food includes stew or okra soup, porridge and meats, rice and a yam paste called 'fufu'.

During the Christmas period, children's parties, employees' end of year parties, etc. are mostly celebrated in the hotels, at the beaches, school parks and community centers with good wishes for all people on earth.

Some Ghanaians also go to Church on the 31st December to thank God for sending Jesus and to pray for a good and safe New Year. People may also use that time to remember those who died during the previous year and pray that the difficulties that they may have encountered over the year don't carry on into the New Year.