Bap­tism day joy

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Western Opinion -

MATILDA Bay is a long way from Con­stantino­ple but the age-old Epiphany Day cel­e­bra­tions were right at home.

More than 600 peo­ple at­tended the Greek Ortho­dox event on Jan­uary 8, said to cel­e­brate the an­niver­sary of the bap­tism of Je­sus Christ in the River Jor­dan.

Eleven boys took part in the swim to re­trieve the Holy Cross from the river.

This year, Kyr­i­akos Bird, the son of De­spine (nee) Lekias and Ni­cholas Bird, emerged with the cross.

Greek Ortho­dox pri­ests, in­clud­ing Fa­ther Kar­alis from the Church of Saints Con­stan­tine and He­lene in North­bridge, led the ser­vice, which in­cluded the Bless­ing of the Waters.

“This event com­mem­o­rates the Bap­tism of Christ in the River Jor­dan,” Fa­ther Kar­alis said. “By Christ be­ing baptised into the river Jor­dan, he sanc­ti­fied all of cre­ation… in a sim­i­lar way, the waters of the Swan River are blessed at Matilda Bay by throw­ing the Holy Cross into the waters.”

Or­gan­is­ers Eve­lyn Palas­sis and Ka­te­rina Dim­itriou and 90 vol­un­teers helped make the event a suc­cess.

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