Orthodox believers in Macedonia celebrate Epiphany today. After the liturgies in the cathedrals, believers headed toward the places where the holy cross was placed in the water, which was previously sanctified by church officials. After the consecration, believers filled vessels of sanctified water, which is believed to be curative.
At the central ceremony in Skopje, Dushan Chimev from Vinica retrieved the Holy Cross from the river Vardar, while Cvetan Mickoski from village Belchishta retrieved the cross from Ohrid Lake.
At the celebration in Gostivar, which was held after more than 70 years, 28-year-old Darko Lavdinov retrieved the cross which was placed in the river Vardar by g. Josif. At the celebration of this holiday in Gostivar attended President Gjorgje Ivanov, who awarded Lavdinov with crafted filigree cross.
President Ivanov also attended the ceremony in Tetovo, where the cross was retrieved by 28-year-old Daniel Milosheski. The cross was thrown into the pool in the courtyard of the cathedral “Ss. Cyril and Methodius”.
Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski attended this solemn ritual in Veles, where, among 100 candidates, the luckiest was 28-year-old Dragan Milkov, who received a laptop the Prime Minister. Earlier, in the church “St. Spas”, a liturgy was held.
In Strumica, Ivo Jonkov from Bulgaria retrieved the Holy Cross which was thrown into the pool “Aquarius”, and earlier, at 10:30 am, in the church “Ss. Cyril and Methodius “, a liturgy was held.
Forty boys jumped in the pool in the courtyard of the cathedral “St. Nikola” in Kumanovo, but the luckiest was 20-year-old Viktor Petkovski, who was making his fifth attempt to retrieve the Holy Cross.
In Delchevo, the cross was thrown into the river Bregalnica and was retrieved by 20-year-old Vinko Zlatkovski from village Gabrovo.
Nikola Jovanovski, who entered the water along with 50 other believers, retrieved the cross from the waters of Kriva Reka in Kriva Palanka.
In Shtip, Goran Jovevski, who has made five attempts to retrieve the cross before, this year managed to come first to the Holy Cross for the first time. This year, Bregalnica parish decided the cross in Shtip to be thrown only into the river Bregalnica and not in the city pool as in the previous years. Apart from this the Bregalnica parish also decided the women’s active participation to be prohibited in this ritual.
In Debar, Holy Cross was thrown by Blagoja Spirovski, governor of Debar parish, in the pool located in the courtyard of the church “St. Petka”. The cross was retrieved by Aleksandar Micevski from Ohrid, originally from Debar, a student at the medical high school. He retrieves the cross for the second time.