Southeast Michigan a bastion for Polish Christmas traditions, rituals

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December 23, 2015

A traditional Polish 12-course Wigilia meal is displayed in Hamtramck, Mich. It includes freshwater carp, uszka and Oplatki wafers. (CNS photo/Dan Meloy, The Michigan Catholic) See MICHIGAN-POLISH-CHRISTMAS Dec. 23, 2015.

A traditional Polish 12-course Wigilia meal is displayed in Hamtramck, Mich. It includes freshwater carp, uszka and Oplatki wafers. (CNS photo/Dan Meloy, The Michigan Catholic)

HAMTRAMCK, Mich. (CNS) — Holiday traditions and rituals are a vital part of each family’s Christmas celebration.

When celebrating the birth of Jesus, many Catholic families have their own customs passed down for centuries through the generations, and this is especially true for southeast Michigan’s Polish families.

Polish Christmas traditions center on the “Wigilia,” a family dinner in which the whole family gathers on Christmas Eve to enjoy a meal and time together before going to midnight Mass.

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