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Church hosts water blessing noon, Saturday

(Jan. 10, 2014) St. George Greek Orthodox Church will host its 15th annual Epiphany & Blessing of the Waters this Saturday, Jan. 11, at noon on the beach at 91st Street.

The Blessing, known as Agiasmos, is an ancient Orthodox Christian tradition that remembers Jesus Christ’s baptism in the Jordan River and the beginning of his public ministry. When Jesus was baptized on Epiphany, he sanctified the water, and the ceremony is done in remembrance of this every year.

The church on 88th Street will hold two services, Orthos at 8:45 a.m. and Divine Liturgy at 10 a.m., followed by a short service on the beach. Father Zasilious Penteridis will lead the services.

Officials will toss two crosses into the ocean — one for boys to chase and the other for girls to retrieve. The two youths who find the crosses will have a blessed year, according to the tradition.

The public is invited to attend the Blessing of the Waters, a ceremony lasting about one hour. Approximately 100-150 people come each year.

For more information, call the church at 410-524-0990.

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