| Jan 3, 2015

Santa's little secret

I can't make it on Wednesday (Christmas Eve) as I have to prepare the cheese sandwiches and whisky for Santa and carrots for Rudolph.

In Liberia, Ebola steals Christmas

Dec 26, 2014

In Liberia, Ebola steals Christmas

The Ebola epidemic has cast a dark shadow over Christmas this year in Liberia, where small businesses are especially feeling the pinch. “This is the worst Christmas we have ever seen,” said Isaac G. Chea, a trader. “Because of the Ebola crisis … people ...

Survivors huddle after violence in India kills 72

Dec 26, 2014

Survivors huddle after violence in India kills 72

Instead of celebrating Christmas in her home, Rina Vor and her four young children were huddled in a church Thursday along with hundreds of other survivors of a rebel massacre that killed 72 members of her tribe. Vor said she was putting her kids ...

Conflict-hit east Ukraine struggles for festive joy

Dec 26, 2014

Conflict-hit east Ukraine struggles for festive joy

The big tree with the glimmering holiday lights is up but the festive spirit is missing on Lenin Square in the heart of east Ukraine’s rebel stronghold of Donetsk. Hundreds of people huddled in the drizzle for the traditional unveiling of the tree ahead ...

'So many tears this Christmas,' says Pope Francis

Dec 26, 2014

'So many tears this Christmas,' says Pope Francis

AFP-JIJI Pope Francis called for an end to “brutal” religious persecution, killings and hostage-taking in the Middle East and Nigeria as well as violence against children in his annual Christmas “urbi et orbi” message. Denouncing conflicts in Ukraine, Libya and elsewhere, and noting last ...

Christmas in Japan 2014

Dec 25, 2014

Christmas in Japan 2014

At first glance, the Christmas trees and illuminations might look familiar, but a few holiday traditions are undoubtably unique to Japan. Here are a few examples from social media.

Dec 25, 2014

Sierra Leone bans Christmas parties amid Ebola menace

Alice Marke and her family aren’t celebrating Christmas the way they used to: The deadly Ebola epidemic in Sierra Leone means no festive parties at the beach, no carolers singing at night. Authorities this year have banned any activities that could further the spread ...

Thousands of  faithful flock to Bethlehem for Christmas

Dec 25, 2014

Thousands of faithful flock to Bethlehem for Christmas

Thousands of Christian pilgrims on Wednesday flocked to the biblical town of Bethlehem for Christmas Eve celebrations at the traditional birthplace of Jesus, lifting spirits in the area after a year of conflict and failed peace efforts. On a crisp, sunny day revelers crowded ...

Pope issues blistering critique of 'hypocritical' Vatican bureaucrats

Dec 23, 2014

Pope issues blistering critique of 'hypocritical' Vatican bureaucrats

To the Catholic Church’s “seven deadly sins,” Pope Francis has added the “15 ailments of the Curia.” Francis issued a blistering indictment of the Vatican bureaucracy Monday, accusing the cardinals, bishops and priests who serve him of using their Vatican careers to grab power ...