The World War I Christmas Truce of 1914
On Christmas Eve, in the middle of the "war that will end all wars," a glimmer of peace flourished between the two rival armies. It was so cold that the water and snow turned into ice. The Germans to keep from freezing, lighted candles that marked their position making them easy targets. However, the British decided to hold their fire. With their binoculars, the British saw that the Germans held Christmas tree branches with lights over their head as a Christmas greeting. Then the British heard the Germans singing a Christmas Carol, it started with a few Germans and then all were singing, “Stille Nacht! Heilige Nacht!” The British troops joined them in singing in English, "Silent Night, Holy Night." Their song stopped the fighting. Both the Germans and the British soldiers ventured onto "no man's land," the territory between opposing trenches. Their superiors could not object because so many soldiers crossed. A truce had occurred even though it was undeclared and there was peace. Enemies no longer sat around a campfire, singing and exchanging small gifts from the little they had. These soldiers who founght against each other were now celebrating Christmas together. Not one shot was fired during that night; it truly was a "silent night." The Joy of Christmas brings out the best in people. This Christmas season, let us treat everyone, even our "enemies," as brothers and sisters. May our Christmas joy be evident to all we meet.