During the period between 27 December and 6 January groups of colourfully dressed children and young people called “Sternsinger” (star singers or epiphany singers) roam the streets of many regions in Germany. They are traditionally dressed to resemble biblical figures, and carry a star with them.
They walk from door to door singing, reciting poems and blessing the household by marking the doorframe with the inscription C + M + B (Christus mansionem benedicat – May Christ guard this house). In return the singers receive sweets and money for charity, mostly for aid projects involving children in need.
In Germany the singing event is also known as Aktion Dreikönigssingen, and is one of the largest global organised charity events which sees children collect for children. In Germany epiphany singers often visit official establishments, such as the Federal Chancellery, and even German Embassies across the globe.