Why a Christmas Tree?

Have you ever wondered how we started using Christmas trees? This tradition goes back to ancient times, pre-Christianity.

Ancient Egyptians worshiped the sun god Ra. They believed as the days were getting shorter that Ra was getting ill, but that his health began to return at the solstice. So Egyptians had greens in their homes, commemorating Ra’s victory over this dark time.
Early Romans celebrated Saturnalia, named after Saturn, the god of agriculture. They knew that the solstice meant the days would start to get longer, and it would soon be time to plant their crops, so they decorated with greenery.
The first modern Christmas trees were used in Germany in the 16th century,when Christians would bring the trees into their homes to decorate them. Martin Luther was the first to add lighted candles to the tree. I have a couple of friends who still use real candles, and one of them generously allowed me to use her photo in this blog. Yes, those are real candles on that tree that is currently standing in her home.
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