Three Wise Men Came to My Door
January 6 is a holiday here. It is call the “Three Kings Day” marking the day when Catholics believe The Three Wise Men delivered gifts of frankincense, myrrh and gold to the baby Jesus.
To this day, the doorways would be sprinkled with holy water and the initials of the Three Kings — C+M+B (Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar) — plus the year are inscribed in chalk over doorways in German-speaking countries on the eve of January 6 to protect house and home. (Although historically the three letters are supposed to come from the Latin phrase for “Christ bless this house” — “Christus mansionem benedicat” — few of the people practicing this custom are aware of this fact. In many parts of Europe, including Austria, Germany, and Switzerland, the Christmas celebration does not end until this date, now considered the arrival of the three “kings of the orient” in Bethlehem.
I noticed all the date on the internet mentioned January 6 is the last day the Three Wise Men will come to your door, but this is not true depending on what city you live in. When I talked to a young man at my mother in law house last year he explained to me they continue going door to door until the first Sunday of January, even if pass the six; the purposes and the traditions. The 6th of January is just the marker of the German national holiday when Jesus was born and according to a Bible story, these three kings saw, on the night when Christ was born, a bright star, followed it to Bethlehem and found the Christchild and presented it with gold, frankincense and myrrh.
Beginning with New Years and through January 6 (some city the first Sunday if Jan 6 is not landed on a Sunday), children and young adults dressed as the kings, and holding up a large star, go from door to door, caroling and singing a Three Kings’ song. For this they receive cookies, sweets or money. Formerly the collected donations went to unemployed craftsmen and veterans, today they go to charities of the church or the Third World.