Christians Will Dive Into Icy East River on Tuesday

Hat tip: B.C. THEOPHANIA (Epiphany) at South Street Seaport

The Holy Metropolis is pleased to announce that for the ninth time since 2001 the blessing of the waters for Theophania (Epiphany) 2010 will again occur at the South Street Seaport, in New York City.

On Tuesday, January 19, 2010, following Divine Liturgy at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of St. Markella, His Eminence PAVLOS, the Metropolitan of America, will lead the clergy and faithful to the seaport where he will conduct a service to bless the waters of the great city. He will complete the blessing by casting a Cross into the icy waters. This symbolizes the baptism of Jesus Christ in the Jordan at the hands of St. John the Baptist. Dozens of young men will dive into the harbor hoping to reach the Cross first and return it to Metropolitan PAVLOS.

This ancient and holy Christian ritual, dating from the time of the Emperors in Constantinople, will be witnessed by the people of New York through the cooperation of the local authorities, and NYPD harbor launches and scuba divers. 

The Holy Metropolis invites everyone to come witness this glorious and joyful Holy Tradition together with the clergy and faithful of the Cathedral. It is expected that the solemn procession to the seaport will begin at 1 PM from the intersection of Fulton and Front Streets [ ]. The procession will be lead by the Monaghan Bag-Pipe Band.

Seats on buses from the Cathedral in Astoria will be available with a required reservation. Contact Bishop Christodoulos for directions by public transportation or automobile at 718-913-4242.