24/12/2011: Day 3,Shabbat and Merry Lithuanian Christmas Eve

The 3rd day begun by a religious tour in the city center of Nicosia,the non-occupied part.We visited the Catholic church,then the Maronite Church,then the Orthodox Church and at the end the mosque.It is remarkable that all those religious monuments are really closed passing a message of acceptance and tolerance towards the people. Each community in Cyprus has its own religious monuments,as a result,it has its own contribution to the cultural and historical heritage of the island.During the city tour,almost all the participants had been identified with one of the monuments.The most impressive thing  for me until then, it was when the Muslims went to the mosque for the pray of Friday.Before,I knew that the Friday is the Muslim’s Holy day but I had never seen people going to the mosque in order to pray.While we were waiting for our Muslims friends to finish their pray we exchanged many nice ideas about the common aspects of the different religions.

After the tour,I had another really intensive experience, the Shabbat.I was looking forward to experience Shabbat,due to the fact that I was completely ignorant.It was the first time that I saw a “kippah”  (literally means dome). The ceremony was something really new for me and at the same time something really closed to me.During the ceremony,it emerged something between awe,tranquility and joy.The Shabbat ceremony succeed the ceremony of the Lithuanian Christmas Eve.During the ceremony we exchanged wishes expressing grateful feelings. The “saying thank you” costume it was something really awesome because, nowadays,we become more and more ignorant about the real meaning of that phrase.The most interesting it was an interactive game that gave us the opportunity to learn more about the Lithuanian history and culture.

Before,going to bed I went to buy a Christmas present because the next day,Christmas,we were going to exchange presents.

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