If you ask, most say it is their favorite holiday. Yet, Christmas in the villages of Malawi is very different than in the developed world. There are no lights. No Christmas tree. No parades. No Christmas movies or even shopping for gifts.
Instead of all these things Christmas in the villages of Malawi is simple. It’s about Jesus, family, and friends. In the village, Christian or Muslim, everyone knows Christmas is a celebration of Jesus. They might disagree on who Jesus is, but they understand the holiday is about His birth.
To celebrate families and friends come together for a big feast. Served that day will things like rice, potatoes, relish made from tomatoes and perhaps pumpkin leaves. Someone might donate a goat or chicken as the center piece of the feast. Then of course there will be plenty of Nsima, a local dish made from corn meal or cassava and boiled into a think cream of wheat like paste. There will be no silver, no glasses, no fancy tablecloth. In fact, there likely will be no table at all. Gathered around a cloth spread out on the ground, God made hands to work perfectly as a spoon.
The celebration won’t end there. There will be singing, storytelling, perhaps even a drama or two. Everyone participates, no one is left out. Everyone celebrates, everyone shares on this happy day.
There are many things the developed world can learn from the villages of Malawi. What Christmas should really be about is one of them.