Although the tradition of receiving Baby Jesus on the night of December 24 has gained prominence in recent decades, Mexico claims the old traditions and the Three Kings Day is still one of the most important events in the different festivities of Christmas.
The Three Kings of the East tradition is one of the oldest in Mexico since the time of Spanish colonization and even today many families keep celebrating this special day where children are certainly the main protagonists. In despite of that in recent years the character of Santa Claus has become more significant.
Every January 6 we celebrate in Mexico the so-called Three Kings Day where the children wake up very early in the morning and run to open the gifts that the Three Kings of the East have left at the Christmas tree or near the representation of the Nativity. A festive day of games and family reunions where everything is special and where children continue believing in the magic of a Christmas, that this day is dismissed until next year.
On the 5th, Their Majesties leave the gifts while the children are sleeping, so that the 6th is celebrated as a special day where the traditional Rosca de Reyesis distributed. A bread with circular shape and a hole in the middle, made with a sweet dough, decorated with dried fruits and which hides a special surprise: the figure of a child. The lucky person who gets this figure will have to pay or invite the tamales on the Candlemas Day.
These days, the tradition orders to hide a Baby Jesus like main figure, generally a plastic one. And whoever finds it should invite those present on February 2, the Candlemas Day, delicious tamales. This day the Virgin Mary, mother of God, is commemorated. In its manger, in Bethlehem were received more than 2,000 years ago the 3 wise men who came with their animals to adore Jesus, with incense, gold and myrrh and that´s the reason of the celebration of the Three Kings Day in Mexico every January 6.
According to Mexican tradition, the Nativity representation must be kept on Candlemas Day, candles are brought to bless and Baby Jesus is presented at the church of your election, the child’s godfather should dress it and at night all the family comes together to eat tamales and atole at the expense of those who have found the Baby Jesus in the famous Rosca de Reyes.
Many Mexican people keep little Baby Jesus statuettes in their homes, in most cases, these are always on display somewhere in the house. People dress their little Baby Jesus with different clothes, and on Candlemas Day, they take them to church so the priest can bless and pour holy water on them.
Candlemas Day is celebrated on February 2.
Source: Mundo Cuervo