Reflections & Ruminations

  • Jacqueline Stuart

Weihnachtsfrieden: The Christmas Truce of 1914



This three minute Christmas Truce commercial by UK supermarket chain Sainsbury’s

brought tears to my eyes.


A German and British solider share a smoke during World War I Christmas Truce

Take Time for Paradise


The soldiers that had only hours ago aimed weapons at each other now shook hands in no man’s land, offering gifts, trading food and exchanging POWs.

A Christmas Truce. It’s an unthinkable concept today, considering how drastically the rules of engagement have changed. But during The Great War (i.e., World War 1) on that unimaginable Christmas day of 1914, over 100,000 German, British and French troops partook on a large scale ceasefire to fraternize with each other.


Across trenches throughout Europe, German, French and British troops shouted Yuletide greetings to each other. In one trench, the British troops could hear the Germans singing Silent Night in German and before too long, the troops crawled out of their trenches, waving white flags, wanting to partake in a little holiday celebration with the other side.


The soldiers that had only hours ago aimed weapons at each other now shook hands in no man’s land, offering gifts, trading food and exchanging POWs. Some drank and ate together, while others partook in burial ceremonies for the fallen soldiers. A little football (soccer) was also played in some parts. The Christmas Truce signified a willingness to put aside differences. In some battlefields, the truce lasted for days.



A New Kind of War

WWI redefined the tactics of war, and with the introduction of new artillery and weapons, including mustard gas, the battlefield was a terrifying ground of constant death.

The soldiers had grown tired of the war, having recently suffered massive casualties and losses (about 600,000 soldiers total) in the six-day Battle of Marne. WWI redefined the tactics of war, and with the introduction of new artillery and weapons, including mustard gas, the battlefield was a terrifying ground of constant death.


Today, thinking of all the violence and potential disasters unfolding throughout the world, I am taking some time to reflect and to honor my invisible warrior helpers. My heart is also with the WWI soldiers who fought on all fronts.


The Great War lasted until November 1918. A total of about 10 million soldiers were killed in the war, while another 8 million went missing. Millions of others ended up wounded or disfigured. Wherever these soldiers are today, be it in the cosmos or as reincarnated souls, I extended my heartfelt wishes to them all. And to you. Frohe Weihnachten.

Dreams and Shadowlands

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