12 January 2012, 10:20
Renowned theologian suggests celebrating Nativity and New Year on the same day
Moscow, January 12, Interfax - Professor of the Moscow Theological Academy Protodeacon Andrey Kurayev suggests celebrating Christmas on January 1.
"No matter what church calendar Christians use when they celebrate Christmas, it is absurd. If you celebrate Nativity on December 25, why the year which begins from His Nativity starts only a week after? If the Nativity of Christ happens on January 7, why the new "year Anno Domini" starts a week before it?" Father Andrew wonders in his blog.
According to him, there were no such discrepancies when the New Year started in September, and years were counted since "creation of the world," not the Nativity.
"It's not real to return to such counting. Then, may be Christians can agree to celebrate Christmas and New Year on one and the same day? Let us celebrate Christmas on January 1," Kurayev suggested.
He says there are no canons that prevent Orthodox from moving Christmas. Such a change won't bring any significant liturgical consequences and reformations to the calendar.
"Even the feast of the Lord's Baptism can stay on the same place as the time when Christ was baptized is not connected with the time of His birth (He was baptized at the age of 30)," Father Andrey writes.
According to him, there are no indications to the time of Nativity in Bible (some indirect descriptions point out to the middle of winter, but nothing can be said more precisely).