Epipahny also known as Theophany or Fota (The Lights) , is the Christian celebration of the baptism of Jesus Christ in the Jordan River , by John the Baptist. It is celebrated on the 6th of January and is the third and last celebration of the Christmas period. The name also occurs due to the appearance of the Holy Trinity according to the related gospel passages.

According to the related gospel passages, during the beginning of the 30th year of Jesus’ life, John, the son of Zachariah and Elizabeth, who was later known as John the Baptist, christened Jesus in the Jordan River. During that moment, the Holy Spirit arrived from the sky in the form of a dove, and at the same time, a voice is heard saying, “This is the Beloved Son of God, through whom God blessed to save sinners”. This phrase is mentioned in the gospels of Mathew, Mark and Luke.

The main ceremonies during the Epiphany are:

  • The Great Sanctification, which takes place within the Churches.
  • The Dive of the Holy Cross, which follows the Great Sanctification

The Holy Cross is submerged in seawater within ports or rivers in order to replicate Jesus’ baptism. Usually young people dive into the cold water in order to get the cross and receive the blessing of the priest as well as the wishes from their fellow locals.

Epiphany photos: