Greek Fire 7. Theophánia, rituals of protection and purification
Thursday, January 7, 2020
I am writing this on January 6th, Epiphany, known here as Theophánia or Ta Fóta, the Festival of Lights. It is the last day of the Twelve Days of Christmas, and one of the most important festivals in the Greek Orthodox Church. In normal times, people would gather at the seaside for the Blessing of the Waters, in honour of the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River and the revelation of his divinity. The priest would throw a cross into the sea (securely tied to a string) and youths would dive to retrieve it, competing to show their strength and skill, hoping to gain luck and honour.
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