La Posada shirtMexico’s main Christmas celebration is known as La Posada, which is a faith based procession that reenacts the search for shelter by Joseph and Mary before the birth of Jesus. Throughout the actual procession, the celebrants proceed from home to house with the photos of Mary and Joseph searching for shelter in Bethlehem.

Despite the fact that Santa Claus is not predominant, his bright red suit is represented in the traditional flower of the season. This flower is the poinsettia, which has brilliant green and red leaves. The story connected with the poinsettia is really rather touching. It is believed that a young boy walking to the church to view the nativity scene showing the birth of Christ had realized on the way that he had no present to offer the Christ child. So, he gathered up several plain green branches and unwanted weeds to give. Many jeered as he walked into the church, but he was told that as long as his gift was from his heart, the child would value it. When he set his gift next to the manger, they changed into bright red and green leafs, and thus the poinsettia, or Christmas flower, was created.

The Mexican kids receive presents on Christmas day. They are blindfolded while they use a stick or a bat to try and break a decorated clay pinata that dangles and swings at the end of a string. Once the pinata has been broken, the children scampler to retrieve the candy that was inside the pinata. Those children who have been good also on January 6th receive a gift from the Three Wise Men, the same men who went to the newborn Christ child and brought gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.