Christmas spirit warms up Bengaluru

Bengaluru, Dec 25 (IANS) Thousands of Bengalureans celebrated birth of Jesus Christ in early Friday, as churches across the city heralded Merry Christmas with bells and carols.

At the stroke of midnight, hundreds of devout prayed in St Mary’s Basilica at Shivajinagar in the city centre.

Later in the day, churches across the city teemed with people prompting churches to arrange extra seating under makeshift tents.

Many churches including St. Mark’s church on M. G. Road hosted more than one Christmas service to bless the high turnout of devotees.

Children, youngsters, elders and old people gleamed in their new clothes to mark the most joyous occasion of Christianity.

Manifesting the spirit of Christmas, people hugged and kissed each other and the faithful reverently partook in the Holy Communion service by breaking the bread and sipping wine.

The sweet music of all time global Christmas favourite carols “Silent Night Holy Night”, “Hark the Herald Angels Sing”, and “O Come All Ye Faithful” wafted out of churches across the city.

Colourful banners, wreaths, stars of all colours, flowers, lighting, Christmas trees, and candles richly adorned the churches in the city.

Not just churches, several malls, restaurants and eateries in the city generously decorated their premises and rolled out Christmas fares and attractions in their menu. A major stretch of Brigade Road was lit up by soft drink behemoth Coca Cola with a Christmas theme.

With his long white beard and a bright red costume bordered in white, Santa Claus spread the cheer of Yuletide spirit by distributing candy and toffees to children and elders alike.

Almost every church had a nativity scene recreated with a manger, animals, angels, wise men, shepherds, Mary, Joseph and infant Jesus.

Several people from different faiths enthusiastically attended Christmas services in various churches, and also indulged in selfies, clicking many inside and outside the brightly embellished churches.

To ensure peaceful passage of the festival marking Christ’s birth, Karnataka government took care to avoid any untoward incident by manning some famous churches in prominent places in the city with policemen and sniffer dogs.

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