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 19 January

According to the Orthodox faith, the Vodicians (also known as the Baptism of Jesus Christ) represent the day on which Saint John the Baptist baptizes Jesus Christ in Jordan. Baptism in the Orthodox Church represents a spiritual birth and the beginning of human life in faith. The celebrations have two segments and last two days-the first on January 19 is called "Mashki Vodici" (Male Vodicians), and the second on January 20 is called "Zhenski Vodici" (Female Vodicians).


Today, every year on January 19, priests in many places in Macedonia traditionally throw the ritual cross into a large water area and people jump in front of the cross. It is believed that the person who captures the cross will be blessed for a year. The ritual symbolizes the entry of Christ into Jordan. The most visited rituals take place in Ohrid. The air and water are cold, yet the believers are inspired to jump in and swim to find the cross. This orthodox custom is very specific to Macedonia - don't miss it.

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