Skip to comments.Tarpon Springs Celebrates Epiphany
Posted on 01/05/2006 8:21:25 PM PST by DocRock
TARPON SPRINGS - Dress warm, get there early and be prepared for a massive crowd.
That's the advice offered by organizers of the 100th annual Epiphany Day celebration, which promises to draw the biggest crowd ever.
His All Holiness Bartholomew, the ecumenical patriarch of all Eastern Orthodox churches, will officiate at prayer services that begin at 7:30 a.m. today inside St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral.
The patriarch will throw the cross into Spring Bayou at what for many is the highlight of Epiphany Day activities when more than 50 teenage boys dive into the 70-degree springwater to retrieve the holy symbol.
The Dive for the Cross is scheduled for about 12:30 p.m.
This is His All Holiness Bartholomew's first visit to Tarpon Springs, and he is joined by high ranking Orthodox clergy from around the world. Also, diplomats from Greece, Turkey, Russia and Cyprus and representatives of the U.S. Senate and House, and possibly the White House, are scheduled to attend.
Early morning temperatures are expected to be in the low 50s, rising to the high 50s by the time of the cross retrieval. Divers are blessed by the patriarch, and the diver who retrieves the cross receives a special blessing that is said to last through the year.
At a meeting with reporters Thursday, Archbishop Demetrios, leader of the Greek Orthodox church in America, said that as brave as the boys are to dive into the bayou on a cold day, it is their drenched-to-the-skin procession back to the cathedral for their blessing that most impresses him.
Also at the meeting, His All Holiness Bartholomew said he is looking forward to resuming a dialogue between the two original branches of Christianity when Roman Catholic Pope Benedict XVI visits him in Istanbul, Turkey, this year.
Ouzo for everybody!!
Do you know what station is carrying it? I didn't see it in the article.
Ah....never mind...you read my mind....LOL.
I love Tarpon Springs, especially the downtown area.
Yes, it's touristy - but it's quite interesting. I love the food and for a guy, I even like to go in some of the shops too.
It's about to start Bump!