1st January St Basil
It's good old Saint Basil who brings presents to the greek children and on New Years day, not on Christmas Day.
My kids got their presents from St Nick on Christmas day and they have continued that tradition with their children. Both generations naturally thought they should get presents on both days. No way that was going to happen.
6 th January there is another big celebration, public holiday, that of the Blessing of the Waters. This year churches are open but only a few at a time are allowed inside.
Only half of the ceremony takes place inside the church. After the main service a procession of priests and important island people proceed down to the waterfront where a big woooden cross, attached to a long line, is thrown into the harbour 3 times. The third time the cross goes into the water a bunch of hardy locals dive in to retrieve it. The one who holds the cross aloft is specially blessed and receives some reward from the church.
This year none of that was supposed to happen but in some places the cross was thrown into the sea or a river and various church officials plus those faithful ones who dove into the waters to be first to reach the cross have all received hefty fines.
We would have brought back bottles of blessed water from the church which K would have sprinkled over us both and all around the house.
The whole island plus a few hundred visitors usually go down to the harbour, all dressed up in Sunday best, to witness all this. Instead today we stayed home and K watched one of the services on TV.
It's a day for gathering with friends and family. drinking ouzo and seafood mezes and enjoying the pomp and ceremony. Usually.
Greece has so many celebrations and festivities, I'm intrigued to read about them when you enlighten us.ReplyDelete
So happy Blessings of the Waters day, your fish looks delicious !
The fish was perfect just with a little 🍋 juice and a lettuce salad.Delete
Thanks for the heads-up on the name days. I've a few i had better send messages to tomorrow. Enjoy your feasting.ReplyDelete
So many name days!! We have so many Yiannis and Gianna's. Hard to keep up with them allDelete
I love all the local traditions over there.ReplyDelete
One after another, especially at this time of the yearDelete
It is interesting g to read about the traditions and celebrations, I have heard of a few Yiannis here in Melbourne , which is not surprising as Melbourne is supposed to have the largest Greek population after Athens!ReplyDelete
We saw some of your celebrations on the Greek news. So much easier to dive in after the cross when it's summer and the water is warm!Delete
It's good that people still carry out such wonderful traditions Linda. But most of all they still believe.ReplyDelete
These traditions keep religion alive I reckon.Delete
They normally do the Blessing of WatersReplyDelete
at a couple of locations here in Adelaide
but I don't think it happened this year.
Unless people were doing it on the sly
like in Poros!
In some places in Australia they did it for sure, and America. We saw it all on TV. Wherever there wasnt a lockdown I am sure Greeks gatheredDelete
There's no lockdown here so maybeDelete
they did. Normally they do a little
feature on the evening news.
It must be difficult for people not to do what they have always done, especially when it has so much religious significance.ReplyDelete
Covid has changed so much for so many people :(
It's a strongly entrenched tradition here, very much part of the culture whether you live in a big city and have a more modern outlook or a small village or island.Delete
Is there ever a Saint Letsstayhomeanddonothing Day? If not; you should establish one.ReplyDelete
Letsodonothingbuteatanddrinkanddance day!! It's a multiple fiesta.Delete
Stayathomeanddonothingbuteatdrinkanddance. A few of those every year too
So many fiestas, so little time.ReplyDelete
We would love to have enjoyed a fish BBQ outside but with our temps currently around -3C I think we'll be staying indoors by the fire!
Today I am wearing my lockdown uniform - PJs, fleece robe, socks and slippers 😁
Thank goodness there's a bit of sunshine. Temps going up at the weekend. It'll be sea turf BBQ then, though we are still eating that fishDelete
Maybe the priests could sprinkle blessed water over the whole world, who knows it might do a bit of good.ReplyDelete
And spitting on everyone helps too lol maybe all this is just the evil eye.Delete
I don’t think we had any blessings this year, not only was covid a factor our weather was terribleReplyDelete
A couple of years ago we went and saw the service and throwing of the cross into the water.
It seems like years ago now,
The service was still held in our local churches. I think my daughter got some holy waterDelete
It would be a little chilly diving in the river here especially as they would have to bore through the ice first,lol. Apparently we have 6,700 Greeks living in our city (just looked it up) so I'm sure many of the same celebrations go on here.ReplyDelete
Some of the rivers up north have ice on them but not enough you'd have to drill a hole. Any heated swimming pools? They bless those as well.Delete
The service probably just took place inside like it did here this year
Blessing of the Waters drama today inReplyDelete
little old Adelaide! "Unauthorised"
swimmer jumped in, grabbed the cross
and wouldn't give it back.