Travel Stories

A travel blog for a long-term expat, backpacker, traveler, ESL teacher, and photographer. 

Christmas Spirit In Korea

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One of my co-teachers wanted to give me some Christmas spirit so I was convinced to go to a Christmas pageant....at a church.

Church, church, church WHAT IS THIS STRANGE PLACE THEY CALL CHURCH? It was inevitable though because everyone seems to be quite Christian here. ha ha. I can't always say no so I figured if I say yes early on, it'll be better for me in the long run. I honestly went more for the support of her 5 year old daughter who was doing a little Christmas jig than for any other reason. Come on, don't judge, a little Korean child really wanted me to watch her dance. Anyways, we were seated by women wearing the traditional hanboks (Korean traditional dress) with "Miss America" style banners over them saying, "God Bless You" or some shit similar to that. The church opened up the ceremony with English Christmas songs translated into Korean with traditional dancers dancing in the background.

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I then sat through an hour service - don't ask me what it was about because A) it was in Korean, B) it was religion related. I'll be honest, I covered my eyes with my hair and took a nap through the entire service. Thank god Koreans don't make you stand up to sing because that would've been awkward if I was the only one sitting.

Alas, after an hour and a half of boring, the children got on stage and did their dances. There were probably eight different groups dancing to music. The boys dressed as devils were probably the strangest outfits I observed (as you see to the right). Some kids had lamb hats and lamb onesies as their outfits and I was incredibly jealous and thought about stealing the hats off their heads. Why didn't I get to dress as a lamb as a child?

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 Anyways, what I learned/observed about Korean church:

1) You get free food from churches around the world, not excluding Korean churches.

2) Koreans take the same Christmas tunes and translate the songs to Korean. Fine, this is normal, however; they would sing, "We Wish you a Merry Christmas" and then switch to Korean. It wasn't consistent, lol - pick a language, damnit. Don't tease me.

3) If there is another foreigner in the church, people point them out to you. I guess we're supposed to telepathically bond because we're foreigners. I don't know.

4) The male children were dressed ridiculously ridiculous and that's all I learned. Good story. Here are some more of the photos of the ultra awesome outfits.