Alter Cloth Depicting the Nativity

© 1992, Centre de Conservation du Québec. All Rights Reserved.


Christmas is indeed one of the most celebrated festivities. From every corner of the world, the Nativity feast is marked by various celebrations. Canada and France offer you some of the diversity of Christmas traditions.

This is one of three learning collections in which different aspects of Christmas are presented:

  • Social Customs;
  • Family Celebrations;
  • Religious Ceremonies.

The three masses, the procession of the Christ Child and the visit to the crèche were essential elements of the traditions surrounding this great celebration. In France, although Easter remained the major religious festival, the festivities connected with Christmas grew, as the many carols, and church or family crèches demonstrate.

The exhibit seeks to place some of the traditions of Christmas in a historic context and is not intended to provide a comprehensive view of Christmas. Christmas has turned out to be one of the main religious festivals celebrated in Canada. From the beginning of New France up till the end of the XIXth century, Amerindians, Francophones and a large number of Anglophones went to church to celebrate the Nativity at Christmas.

Teachers' Centre Home Page | Find Learning Resources & Lesson Plans