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Christians celebrate Christmas across Pakistan

Published Dec 25, 2016 01:54pm

Xmas trees, fairy lights, Santa caps and snowmen dotted cities across Pakistan as Christmas festivities kicked off on Sunday.

Members of the Christian community will attend special services at illuminated churches where prayers will also be offered for the progress and prosperity of Pakistan, Radio Pakistan reported.

Residential colonies were decorated with twinkling lights and stars, and baubles such as bells, pine cones, apples, candies, tinsel and balloons bedecked trees, streets, houses and churches. Wreaths were hung outside stores buzzing with last-minute shopping on Christmas eve.

Ahead of Christmas this year, Minister for Railways Khawaja Saad Rafique also inaugurated a special Christmas Train which travelled across the country spreading Christmas cheer. The Xmas Peace Train that left Peshawar on Dec 22 will reach Karachi on Dec 31.

Explore: In pictures: All aboard the Christmas train!

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif ordered there to be zero loadshedding today in the country.

President Mamnoon Hussain and PM Nawaz extended their heartiest felicitations on the occasion and wished Christians in Pakistan and all over the world a merry Christmas.

The government is striving to promote interfaith harmony discourage religious discrimination, they said.

Explore: Christmas in Karachi: Who needs reindeer if you have camels?

A woman holds a baby in Santa Claus cap, as they attend a ceremony with others on Christmas eve at Central Brooks Memorial Church in Karachi. ─Reuters
A woman holds a baby in Santa Claus cap, as they attend a ceremony with others on Christmas eve at Central Brooks Memorial Church in Karachi. ─Reuters

A beautiful illuminated view of decorated first special Christmas train in connection of Celebration ceremony of Christmas ahead of Christmas Day at Saddar Railway Station in Rawalpindi, ─Zubair Abbasi/PPI
A beautiful illuminated view of decorated first special Christmas train in connection of Celebration ceremony of Christmas ahead of Christmas Day at Saddar Railway Station in Rawalpindi, ─Zubair Abbasi/PPI

Christians attend midnight service at Saint Anthony's church on Christmas eve in Lahore. ─AP
Christians attend midnight service at Saint Anthony's church on Christmas eve in Lahore. ─AP

Pakistani Christian gather on a street to celebrate Christmas in Islamabad. ─AFP
Pakistani Christian gather on a street to celebrate Christmas in Islamabad. ─AFP

Pakistani Christian children gather on their street to celebrate Christmas in Islamabad. ─AFP
Pakistani Christian children gather on their street to celebrate Christmas in Islamabad. ─AFP

Christians visit a grave of their family member at a graveyard ahead of Christmas in Karachi. ─AP
Christians visit a grave of their family member at a graveyard ahead of Christmas in Karachi. ─AP

People pray as they gather for a ceremony on Christmas eve at Central Brooks Memorial Church in Karachi. ─Reuters
People pray as they gather for a ceremony on Christmas eve at Central Brooks Memorial Church in Karachi. ─Reuters

Pakistani Christian children walk past the lights decoration for Christmas celebration in Islamabad.─AFP
Pakistani Christian children walk past the lights decoration for Christmas celebration in Islamabad.─AFP

Pakistani balloon vendors cross a street in heavy fog in Lahore. ─AFP
Pakistani balloon vendors cross a street in heavy fog in Lahore. ─AFP

A man gives final touches to a Santa Claus decoration on Christmas Eve, in a Christian neighborhood. ─AP
A man gives final touches to a Santa Claus decoration on Christmas Eve, in a Christian neighborhood. ─AP

A man decorates a tree for Christmas in a Christian neighborhood. ─AP
A man decorates a tree for Christmas in a Christian neighborhood. ─AP

People walk past an artificial decoration wreath hanging outside a shop selling various items for Christmas celebrations in Karachi. ─Reuters
People walk past an artificial decoration wreath hanging outside a shop selling various items for Christmas celebrations in Karachi. ─Reuters

A Santa Claus decoration sticker hangs on a stall where women go through various items to buy for Christmas celebrations in Karachi. ─Reuters
A Santa Claus decoration sticker hangs on a stall where women go through various items to buy for Christmas celebrations in Karachi. ─Reuters

A man decorates a Christmas tree at the St. John Cathedral Church ahead of Christmas celebrations in Peshawar. ─Reuters
A man decorates a Christmas tree at the St. John Cathedral Church ahead of Christmas celebrations in Peshawar. ─Reuters

Pakistani children decorate a Christmas tree at the St John's Cathedral Church in Peshawar. ─AFP
Pakistani children decorate a Christmas tree at the St John's Cathedral Church in Peshawar. ─AFP

People pray as they gather for a ceremony on Christmas eve at Central Brooks Memorial Church in Karachi. ─Reuters
People pray as they gather for a ceremony on Christmas eve at Central Brooks Memorial Church in Karachi. ─Reuters

A member of church holds a cross as he walks past people pray during a ceremony on Christmas eve at Central Brooks Memorial Church in Karachi. ─Reuters
A member of church holds a cross as he walks past people pray during a ceremony on Christmas eve at Central Brooks Memorial Church in Karachi. ─Reuters