Sunday, 22 January 2012

Where is the cross? or celebration of Baptism of Jesus Christ – Vodici

On the 19th of January Orthodoxes celebrated the Baptism of Jesus Christ, Vodici, called also “Bogojavlenie” which is celebrated for more than 2000 years. Celebration of this day is performed by a unique (and funny) ceremony of throwing the cross into the waters of a lake or river, what symbolizes an unification of the human with Jesus Christ.  In Struga to the river of Crn Drim (Black Drim).
During this unique event, the waters of the lake are being baptized by the high priest (Archbishop of Ohrid – Stefan) by throwing the cross into the water, but the real attraction is the people jumping into the cold waters of the lake trying to find the cross! The dare-devil who finds it is believed to be blessed for the whole of next year and becomes a kind of local hero.
This year the winner won also a laptop. After all, all the shaking because of coldness, freezed competitors are served with hot rakija to warm them up (and all the others too).
Reportedly, last years in Struga, the cross once got lost in the water depths, other time was broken…fortunately this year nothing bad happened.