pcloudyn.png
Tuesday October 26th, 2021 6:43AM

Some Orthodox Christians ignore COVID warnings on Epiphany

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

SOFIA, Bulgaria (AP) — Thousands of Orthodox Christian worshippers in Bulgaria on Wednesday ignored warnings issued by health authorities to abstain from mass gatherings due to the coronavirus pandemic and kept instead to their centuries-old Epiphany traditions.

Young men plunged into the icy waters of rivers and lakes across Bulgaria to retrieve crucifixes tossed by priests in ceremonies commemorating the baptism of Jesus Christ.

The legend goes that the person who retrieves the wooden cross will be freed from evil spirits and will be healthy throughout the year. After the cross is fished out, the priest sprinkles believers with water using a bunch of basil.

In the small mountain city of Kalofer in central Bulgaria, dozens of men dressed in traditional white embroidered shirts waded into the frigid Tundzha River waving national flags and singing folk songs. Inspired by bass drums and bagpipes and fortified by homemade liquor, they performed a slow “mazhko horo,” or men’s dance, stomping on the rocky riverbed.

The mayor of Kalofer, who usually leads the dance, this year did not enter the river to set an example that coronavirus regulations have to be followed.

A few local police officers attempted to prevent people from entering the river, threatening them with fines, but their calls were widely ignored.

Epiphany marks the end of the 12 days of Christmas, but not all Orthodox Christian churches celebrate it on the same day.

While the Orthodox Christian churches in Greece, Bulgaria and Romania celebrate the feast on Jan. 6, Orthodox Churches in Russia, Ukraine and Serbia follow the Julian calendar, according to which Epiphany is celebrated on Jan. 19, as their Christmas falls on Jan. 7.

Some Western Christian churches celebrate the religious holiday of Epiphany as the Three Kings Day, which marks the visit of the Magi, or three wise men, to the baby Jesus, and closes out the Christmas season.

___

Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic, https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-vaccine and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, Top General short headlines, AP Health, AP World News, AP Entertainment, AP Online Recordings News
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Warnock makes history with Senate win as Dems near majority
Democrat Raphael Warnock has won one of Georgia’s two Senate runoffs, becoming the first Black senator in his state’s history and putting the Senate majority within the party's reach
9:33AM ( 9 minutes ago )
Some Orthodox Christians ignore COVID warnings on Epiphany
Thousands of Orthodox Christian worshippers in Bulgaria ignored warnings by health authorities to abstain from mass gatherings and instead kept to their centuries-old Epiphany traditions
9:26AM ( 15 minutes ago )
Pandemic-era Mardi Gras: No big crowds, but plenty of cake
A subdued Carnival season is starting in New Orleans
9:15AM ( 26 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
UK leader to use 'every second' to vaccinate the vulnerable
UK lawmakers have returned to Parliament to debate a national lockdown that took effect Wednesday morning amid anger over the chaos in the government’s strategy for schools
8:12AM ( 1 hour ago )
EU agency approves Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine
The European Union’s medicines agency has given the green light to Moderna Inc.’s COVID-19 vaccine, a decision that gives the 27-nation bloc a second vaccine to use in the desperate battle to tame the virus rampaging across the continent
8:11AM ( 1 hour ago )
The Latest: European Union gives OK to Moderna vaccine
The European Union’s medicines agency has given approval to Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine
7:47AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP World News
Neil Young becomes latest artist to sell stake in his songs
Veteran rock star Neil Young has become the latest artist to strike gold with his song catalogue
2:04AM ( 7 hours ago )
For media following Georgia, nail-biting and lots of numbers
It was a tense night for news organizations that gave Tuesday's vote count for the Georgia Senate runoffs the type of intense attention that the presidential election received
11:38PM ( 10 hours ago )
Bobby Shmurda to be eligible for release in February
Brooklyn rapper Bobby Shmurda will be eligible for release from prison next month, the New York State Department of Corrections said on Monday
8:36PM ( 13 hours ago )
AP Entertainment
New this week: Morgan Wallen music, tiger cubs and 'Herself'
This week’s new entertainment releases include not one album but a double from rising country superstar Morgan Wallen and a face-off between Ashanti and fellow R&B diva Keyshia Cole in the latest “Verzuz.”
11:36AM ( 1 day ago )
'You'll Never Walk Alone:' Singer Gerry Marsden dies at 78
Gerry Marsden, lead singer of the 1960s British group Gerry and the Pacemakers that had such hits as “Ferry Cross the Mersey” and the song that became the anthem of Liverpool Football Club, “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” has died
4:59PM ( 2 days ago )
AP Online Recordings News
Warnock makes history with Senate win as Dems near majority
Democrat Raphael Warnock has won one of Georgia’s two Senate runoffs, becoming the first Black senator in his state’s history and putting the Senate majority within the party's reach
9:33AM ( 9 minutes ago )
Pandemic-era Mardi Gras: No big crowds, but plenty of cake
A subdued Carnival season is starting in New Orleans
9:15AM ( 26 minutes ago )
Trump supporters rally near White House awaiting president
As Congress prepares to affirm President-elect Joe Biden’s victory, thousands of people have lined up before sunrise Wednesday to show their support for President Donald Trump and his baseless claims of election fraud
9:09AM ( 32 minutes ago )
The Latest: Trump pressures Pence to overturn Biden's win
President Donald Trump is turning up the pressure on his vice president in a futile effort to overturn the results of the Nov. 3 presidential election in Congress
9:00AM ( 41 minutes ago )
Congress set to confirm Biden's electoral win over Trump
President Donald Trump’s extraordinary effort to overturn the presidential election is going before Congress
8:47AM ( 54 minutes ago )