“The holiday is the Day of the Kings…in Spanish, it’s Día de los Reyes…it’s a Catholic celebration but I think it’s predominantly celebrated in Spanish countries. What we do…in my family and in many other Mexican families there is a tradition where you eat a bread…like a crowned bread…it’s sweet and has decorations on top and you hide little toys in the bread…little baby Jesuses. Depending on the size of the bread (la rosca), you go around the family cutting the slices and if you end up getting a slice with a baby Jesus in it that means that on Children’s Day, you have to take a certain traditional dish. Usually in my family, we make tamales. We celebrate it every year even though my family is not very much Catholic , but we are Catholic in our beliefs. We come together to spend it as a family. My mom makes hot cocoa. My grandma is the one who buys the la rosca and we have to buy two because our family keeps expanding. The Day of the Kings is celebrated January 6th and February 2nd is the day you celebrate the treats if you get the baby Jesus…you rejoice in being a family once again together. It’s a feast day you could say…it’s just to celebrate the epiphany that the three kings brought their gifts to Jesus when he was born…honors his baptism and pays homage to the three wise men…that’s basically what we do.
One of my roommates is Mexican and she was sharing with me this holiday that occurs on January 6th every year. She mentioned that her family celebrates this holiday every year even though they are not very much Catholic devoted. She “grew up with the tradition” and continues to celebrate this holiday surrounded by family members. She said that there was a moment in time when she asked her parents what this tradition was and she said that it is mainly a tradition among Mexican households to simply celebrate it. She went on to say that it’s a national celebration in Mexico even if you are not religious and “people come together just to do it simply for the family aspect.”
This Mexican holiday is celebrated to honor the Three Wise Men. Despite its religious roots, even those who are not as religious will celebrate this holiday. Other holidays around wintertime hide some sort of item inside of a baked good. This adds to the enjoyment of the time by adding this game element. As time goes on, it can be seen that this holiday has changed in certain aspects. Many parts of the holiday have religious implications, but in today’s society, not everyone emphasizes those aspects as much. This holiday is recognized as more of a time to enjoy the company of family and friends. Oftentimes you will see this where traditions are continued even though certain aspects of that tradition are lost.