A great many churches in China hold various activities on Christmas Day. If you want to experience a warm Christmas or are interested in religious architecture, culture, and history, several different places are recommended, as follows:
This church is built in the style of Romanesque Architecture, with Chinese traditional elements in the detail of the building, which is the model of integration between Chinese and western architectural features. As the church stands on a bustling street, its magnificence and sanctity are independent of influence. On Christmas day, people will hear the playing of the electric organ and the singing of the choir coming from the church.
Address: No.74 Wangfujing Street, Dongcheng District, Beijing.
St. Joseph’s Cathedral in Tianjin is an example of Romanesque Architecture. Its main building is constructed with red and yellow tiles, and the interior is richly ornamented with painted murals and a great pipe organ. Religious activities are held in this church on every Sunday and Catholic festival. The congregation as well as visitors from all walks of life come to this sanctuary in an endless stream.
Address: No.9 Xining Road, Heping District, Tianjin City.
Hongjialou Cathedral is one of the landmarks in Jinan city, and occupies an important position in the religious architecture of modern times. It is a lofty Gothic cathedral, the body of the church is vast and high, the wall and pointed arch are painted with exquisite craftsmanship, carving, and characters, and the vault is adorned with floral patterns in bright colors. Along with regular Christmas activities, the bishop and priest will give apples for visitors who are not believers after Mass, sharing pleasure with all of the participants.
Address: No.1 Honglong Road, Licheng District, Jinan City, Shandong Province.
Located on the Wuxingjie Street in Xian, Tianshuijing Catholic Church was founded in the reign of Emperor Kang Xi of the Qing Dynasty. It presents Romanesque style; the exterior is a brick-wood structure with gray tiles and beautiful carving, and the interior structure within the semi-circular arch. Here, celebrate Christmas Day by attending an evening performance, and then give children a small gift after Mass.
Address: No.17 Wuxingjie Street, Lianhu District, Xi’an City, Shaanxi Province
Sheshan Catholic Church is renowned as “the first church in the Far East”. It has adopted different styles of its own without steel, nail, wood, and beam, and is the perfect example of an asymmetric building. As the major place of pilgrimage in China, the church has become a holy place in the world since the 1940s. There are 14 pavilions on the twisty road from the foot to the top of the hill, and each pavilion is carved with a relief of the Passion. The Mass, programs and a display of fireworks will show on Christmas Day.
Address: Hilltop of the Xishe Hil, Sheshan Town, Songjiang District, Shanghai.
This is a building complex featuring Byzantine architecture, which is the biggest Catholic Church in Chengdu. It still retains its original features after the war years and being eroded by rain and wind for more than a century. Believers in the church celebrate Christmas with an evening performance that welcomes all people to visit.
Address: No.25 Ping’an Alley, Qingyang District, Chengdu City, Sichuan Province
The Sacred Heart Cathedral has twin pointed towers, is the Gothic Cathedral with a wholly stone structure. It was created by a French designer and constructed by Chinese craftsmen, the work spanning 25 years. The rose window on the façade, west and east side of the cathedral, and the stained glass window with the story of the Bible decorates the wall, depicting 60 stories including the Birth of Jesus, Baptism of Jesus and the Last Supper.
Address: No. 56 Yide Road, Guangzhou City, Guangdong Province
This is the only Christian Church in Guilin, built in 1994. The construction and furnishings follow western design. With Christians singing hymns, the sacred church echoes with melody. The church will start to come alive on the Christmas Day, and after recitation and singing, children will be given Christmas gifts.
Address: No.50 Zhongshan Road, Guilin City, Guangxi Autonomous Region
St. John’s Cathedral, the oldest surviving Western ecclesiastical building in Hong Kong, has a history of 200 years. The pale yellow British architecture stands in the city center and includes a monument in front of the door for mourning the martyrs during the First World War. The floor is adorned with various patterns. On Christmas Day, the church is richly ornamented with a Christmas tree and garlands.
Address: 4 Garden Road, Central, Hong Kong.
Luce Memorial Chapel, a Christian chapel, is a famous symbol on the campus of Tunghai University. It was designed by a brilliant architect Ieoh Ming Pei, who took part in the reconstruction project of Le Grand Louvre. Tunghai University will hold a series of activities to celebrate Christmas. A copper bell ringing 100 times on Christmas Day brings bliss to everyone.
Address: No. 181, Sec.3, Taichung Port Road, Xitun District, Taiwan.