Author Topic: January 19: Epiphany on Old Russian Calendar  (Read 2656 times)

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January 19: Epiphany on Old Russian Calendar
« on: January 25, 2012, 08:08:33 PM »
Russian’s Orthodox Church celebrates Epiphany,  the baptism of Jesus Christ by John the Baptist in the Jordan River,  on January 19. 

In the West, this holiday is on Jan. 6 and emphasizes the coming of the Magi to see the baby Jesus.
The Russian Orthodox Church uses the Julian calendar, and the Epiphany falls on Jan 19.

In old Russian tradition, believers and enthusiasts jump into icy water through holes  in the ice and snow,  usually made in the form of a cross. 

Normally a priest blesses the water and brave people take the plunge.  Many believe that the temperature plummets every winter on Epiphany, leading to the term “Epiphany frosts.”

Many believe that taking the plunge will wash away sins. However, the traditions comes from pre-Orthodox times and that idea is not officially put forth by the Church.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2012, 08:18:42 PM by Admiral_Kolchak »