The literal meaning of the world “Christingle” is “Christ light” that is the light of Jesus coming in the world. However, there is not any certainly about how this light came into being. There are several myths about the starting of the custom. The Asian Welsh service called a “Celenig” is the place where Christingle are used. The Moravian church has held Christingle services for over 200 years.
The Chech people believe in this traditional story for the making of first Christingle. A long time ago, children were asked to put some gifts beside the crib of the church. A poor family, who had no money to buy anything, decided to take an orange but was disappointed to find that the orange was going moldy at the top. Thus, they thought to scoop out the bad bits and put the candle in the top. It will turn into a lantern. To avoid the ordinary look a girl took the red ribbon off her hair and tied it in the centre of orange. They found it difficult to place it with stability so they fastened it with four small sticks and on the ends they put raisins. They took it to the church and were afraid of the reactions of other people. But the priest acknowledged their gift about and told others about its specialty for following reasons:
- The orange is round like the world.
- The candle stands out straight and provides light in the darkness of the world like the love of God.
- The red ribbon moves around the world and symbolizes the blood that Jesus shed when he died for us.
- The four sticks can be the symbol of four directions i.e. east, west, north, south or the representations of four seasons.
- The raisins, nuts or sometimes sweet on the sticks symbolize the natural fruits on earth nurtured by sunshine and rain.
Now, there are various celebrations of Christingles around the world. The children lighten it in church to raise Charity for children. Its ceremony may include dance performances, songs and prayers.