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Greek Orthodox Australians celebrate Holy Epiphany

In Victoria, ceremonies will be held at Frankston and Rye on Saturday and at Port Melbourne on Sunday

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Archive photos: Kostas Deves

05 January 2018

The Greek Orthodox Community of Australia will celebrate the Holy Epiphany this weekend, true to its tradition, benefiting from the warm weather.

As always, the epicentre of the traditional celebration of the baptism of Jesus Christ by John the Baptist in Victoria will be the Church of Holy Epiphany in Frankston.

Over 3000 people are expected to visit Frankston Waterfront today (Saturday 6 January 2018) to celebrate the annual Blessing of the Waters.

The Divine Liturgy is scheduled to take place at 7.30 am, officiated by Bishop Iakovos of Miletoupolis, who will also throw the Holy Cross in the waters of Frankston beach, for the parishe's youth to retrieve.

The annual event festivities will carry on till the evening with the local council and parish extending the invitation to everyone.

Another ceremony will take place on Saturday in Rye, following the eucharistic blessing service at the Orthodox Church in Red Hill. Father Eleftherios Tatsis will form a procession at Rye jetty and perform the Blessing of the Waters. A festival of music and dancing will be held on the foreshore afterwards.

The ceremony of Theofania, following Epiphany Day, will culminate with the Blessing of the Waters at Princes Pier in Port Melbourne. This is a combined celebration for all Parishes in Melbourne celebrated by Bishop Ezekiel of Dervis and Bishop Iakovos of Miletoupolis together with all the Clergy of Melbourne.

Bishop Ezekiel of Dervis tossing the wooden cross from Princes Pier in Port Melbourne on the 12th day after Christmas.

The annual ceremony celebrating the visit of the three kings to the Christ Child, signifying the extension of salvation to the Gentiles will be officiated by Bishop Ezekiel at 1pm but festivities will keep on well into the night and hundreds of faithful are expected to attend this year.

The Blessing of the Waters ceremony will be commencing 1:00pm sharp and will be followed by music, dancing and activities for children until late afternoon. Also, food and drink will be available at the Pier together with a variety of other stalls.

VIC Times & locations
Frankston Pier
Saturday 6 January 2018, celebrations from 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Rye Forshore, Point Nepean Road Rye
Saturday 6 January 2018, 12ish (take traffic) For further information call Rev. Father Eleftherios Tatsis (AH): 5989 2383

Princes Pier, Port Melbourne
Sunday 7 January 2018, 1:00pm - 7:00pm | Princes Pier

In Sydney, the ceremony of the Blessing of the Waters will be officiated by His Eminence Archbishop Stylianos of Australia, with thousands of people expected to attend. On Sunday there will be Matins and a Divine Liturgy from 7.30 am followed by Epiphany Festival and 'Blessing of the Waters' at Yarra Bay.

The Greek Orthodox Parishes of Perth with the Holy Monastery of St. John of the Mountain are hosting the annual Epiphany Celebration on the foreshore of the Swan River at Matilda Bay Reserve with the retrieval of the Holy Cross from the Waters on Sunday 7 January 2018. Service Commences at 12:30pm and parking around the site will be available for parishioners. The Archdiocese has installed tents for shade and protection for the heatwave. There will also be stalls offering souvlakia & sausage Sizzle from 11:00am, as well as cold drinks, sweets and a jumping castle for children.
Strong swimmers over the age of 15 and who are interested in swimming for the Holy Cross are to contact Fr Elpidios on 0407 260 071

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BUT, as always, the Church does NOT invite females to participate and in my mind that is AGAINST the wishes of our Lord, Jesus Christ. In 3 Galatians 28 He spoke of the equality of males and females unto Him. In other words, Jesus is NOT biased, on race, gender or anything else. Yet our Church promotes this great event to men. Yes, one young woman did jump in at one location 2 or 3 years ago but imagine if 50 or 100 women all came up. I wonder what the priests would do then? Our Church needs to wake up to this being 2018 and not 0128 AD. Times have changed and to 'attract' the youth, the Church must face up to realities.
i think your behind the times a bit...women have been participating. In fact believe a girl got the cross at Rye this year! Its ok im sure it will all go gender neutral very shortly

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