Mar Eusebius led the Feast of Epiphany at St. Michael Ethiopian Orthodox Church, Los Angeles, CA
His Grace Alexios Mar Eusebius joined the Ethiopian Orthodox community of Los Angeles, CA to celebrate the Feast of Epiphany at Debre Sahel St. Michael Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church on Sunday Jan 19th. Reverend Fr.Aba Zewdu Hadis ,Vicar of the parish welcomed His Grace to the celebration. His Grace was accompanied by Rev.Fr. Joel Mathew( MGOCSM General Secretary ) and Dn. Saju Varghese(Youth Minister California ).
The Feast of Timkat (Epiphany)is the most important Christian holiday in Ethiopia. Timkat (baptism in Amharic), is the Ethiopian Orthodox celebration of the Epiphany. It celebrates the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River by John the Baptist.
Ethiopian Orthodox Churches celebrate the Feast of Epiphany on January19th. They celebrate the Festival on this day as they use the Julian calendar like other Eastern Orthodox churches. However, the Malankra Orthodox Church uses the Gregorian calendar for its liturgical feasts.
For the celebration of Timkat, the clergy wear ceremonial robes, men and women wear traditional white clothing and children wear colorful clothes and crowns to partake in the festive processions. The Tabot, a symbol of the Ark of Covenant containing the 10 Commandments, is wrapped in luxurious clothing and taken out of the church in procession on the head of the priest. The Divine Liturgy is celebrated near a body of water early in the morning after which the water is blessed and sprinkled on the faithful gathered. Many choose to immerse themselves in the water, thereby, symbolically renewing their baptism. Following the ceremony, the Tabot is taken back to church in a colorful procession.