The Christmas Truce happened 102 years ago in 1914 during WWI. The truce took place on Christmas Eve between thousands of British, Belgian and French soldiers. They put down their riffles, stepped out of their trenches and started interacting with their German enemies. They exchanged gifts of cigarettes, food, buttons and hats and they played soccer. The soccer games are believed to have not been organized and to be played with a makeshift soccer ball.
Most believe that the truce began with the singing of Christmas carols from the trenches. Each side would take turns singing a carol until they joined together and sang 'O Come, All Ye Faithful.' The next morning in some places they left the trenches calling out "Merry Christmas!" Others held out signs saying "You no shoot, we no shoot."
The event is now seen as a miracle or a rare moment of peace just a few months into a war that would eventually claim over 15 million lives. The Christmas Truce also gave them a chance to bury their comrades whose bodies had laid for weeks in "no mans land." It affected the soldiers in WWI by showing them that their was some peace. It allowed them to reset and spend one day not fighting. One man said, "And I thought, well, this is really a most extraordinary thing - two nations both singing the same carol in the middle of a war." And of course, this was only a truce but never peace.
The purpose of the WWI Christmas truce was to ceasefire for long enough so the soldiers and everyone involved would be able to enjoy their Christmas with out fighting. They didn't want to continue the war on Christmas day. This is one of the most commonly know WWI stories. People are moved knowing that even the soldiers fighting in a war could have peace on Christmas. This is likely to never happen again so people look at it with great respect.
It was clear to both sides that this was never peace, only a short truce. After Christmas, the war continued and they were fighting again. Although the truce only lasted for a days, it was just enough to keep the soldiers encouraged and ready to win. This rare day is still an important piece to the history of WWI.