Greece celebrates Epiphany amid a surge in coronavirus cases


People in Greece celebrated the Epiphany, one of Christianity’s most important feast days, on Thursday under strict COVID-19 protection measures.

On the remote Greek island of Gavdos, people gathered with masks on at a chapel in Karave harbour for the Blessing of the Waters ceremony.

Greece’s President, Katerina Sakellaropoulou, was in attendance at the ceremony and gave a speech stressing the need to support the islanders that preserved and cared for this “beautiful cradle of Hellenism.”

READ MORE: A historic Blessing of the Waters for Port Adelaide’s Greek Orthodox Community.

“From the southernmost point of our homeland and of Europe, Gavdos, near our islanders who safeguard a beautiful facet of Hellenism, I wish the best to all,” Sakellaropoulou, who was made an honourary citizen of the island, said.

Sakellaropoulou celebrated the Epiphany at Gavdos island. Photo: InTime News.

Elsewhere, Greek Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, celebrated Epiphany on the island of Agios Efstratios.

He attended a service officiated by the Metropolitan Ierotheos of Limnos and Agios Efstratios, and the Blessing of the Waters ceremony in the island’s harbour.

“Today, on this very important day for Orthodoxy, I wanted to be in the remote Agios Efstratios, a place with a deep history. A landmark of division and trial which, however, becomes a landmark of unity and optimism,” Mitsotakis said after the ceremony.

READ MORE: The Epiphany: What is it and why do Greeks celebrate it?.

Mitsotakis also expressed his hope that the Orthodox holiday will help bring illumination to all, especially those who were still vaccine hesitant. He urged them to get vaccinated “…to protect their own lives but also the safety and health of those they care for.”

On the mainland, in Athens, the liturgy of the Great Sanctification was performed at 9.30am in the Cathedral by the Archbishop of Athens Ieronymos.

These Epiphany services all came as Greece recorded 33,716 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, as well as 70 deaths.

READ MORE: Blessing of the Waters events across NSW and Victoria cancelled due to COVID-19.




By subscribing you accept our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.


Latest News

Christopher Michalakas among South Australia’s top law graduates

With three major law schools and over 4200 legal practitioners currently practising, South Australia boasts a strong fraternity of lawyers.

The dangers for the Hellenism of diaspora

The Hellenism of diaspora is faced with certain social and historical dangers, situations and realities which cause serious problems.

From ‘greeklish’ to ‘engreek’: The new social media slang

The (new) social media slang is a polyphonic, symbolic language, a cryptic way of communication, which is difficult to decode.

Greek winners at Olive Japan commit to quality and the planet

At the 13th edition of the Olive Japan International Olive Oil Competition, Greek olive oils took home 7 Gold awards and 17 Silvers.

Lipsi labelled Greece’s secret island gem of 2024

Le Figaro has spotlighted Lipsi, the main island in a chain of around 30 isles, in its 2024 list of Greece’s “secret” islands.

You May Also Like

‘Freud’s Last Session’: Nicholas Papademetriou to star in new theatre production

Cypriot Australian actor, Nicholas Papademetriou, to star in Freud's Last Session at Riverside Theatres in Sydney from March 9 to March 12.

Nick Kyrgios and Stefanos Tsitsipas storm into Round 2 of the Australian Open

The men’s and women’s singles first round matches at the Australian Open were all wrapped up on Tuesday night.

Socceroos advance to World Cup’s knockout stage for first time in 16 years

A solo goal from Mathew Leckie has sunk Denmark 1-0 and sent Australia into the World Cup knockout stage for the first time in 16 years.