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19-5 What is Theophany (Bogoyavlenie/Yordanov Den)


This article is from the Bulgaria FAQ, by Dragomir R. Radev radev@tune.cs.columbia.edu with numerous contributions by others.

19-5 What is Theophany (Bogoyavlenie/Yordanov Den)

(by Plamen Sivov) (This entry is in Bulgarian)
GOD) - 6 January

Chestit imen den na Jordanovcite (malko e ranichko, ama
nishto). Eto nakratko smisula na praznika spored
Pravoslavnata curkva:

Na tozi den se praznuva krushtenieto na Iisus Hristos
vuv vodite na reka Jordan (ottuk - Jordanovden). Subitieto e
opisano ot vsichki evangelisti (Mateja 3:13-17, Marko 1:9-
11, Luka 3:21-23 i Ioan 1:29-34) i se naricha Bogojavlenie,
zashtoto pred prisustvashtite na nego ednovremenno se
otkrivat trite lica na Svetata Troica - Iisus Hristos - Sina
Bozhi, krushtavan v rekata, Svetija Duh, slizasht vuv vid na
gulub nad nego i glasa na Otca, proglasjavasht ot nebeto:
"Tova e mojat vuzlyuben sin, v kogoto e moeto blagovolenie".

ENGLISH: The Orthodox Church attaches a great importance to
this feast, because of its deep theological significance.
What is selebrated is not so much the historical fact of the
manifestation of the Holy Trinity to the world for the very
first time, nor the beginning of Christ's public life, nor
again the baptism, administered by John the Baptist: it is
rather the manifestation of God's glory, of His love for
mankind, of His mercy and compassion expressed in the person
of Jesus Christ, Who assumed flesh and became Man in order
to become a sacrifice of salvation for the sake of all men.
"The grace of God our Savior has appeared to all men" (Tit.,

Inspired by the baptism of Christ and by this stirring
of divine life, poured forth for the salvation and
sanctification of mankind, the early Church reserved this
day for the baptism of catechumens (in Slavonic "oglasheni",
e.g. those who are preparing themselves for the sacrament of
baptism, but are not members of the Church yet),
increasingly repeating with St. Paul: "As many have been
baptized into Christ have put on Christ." ("Vie, koito se
krustihte v Hrista, v Hrista se i obljakohte").

Na praznika se pravi Vodosvet, za da pomnim, che s
krushtenieto si Gospod osveti vodata, a s neja i cjaloto

ENGLISH: Blessed water will be used by the priest to
sprinkle the homes of the faithful. The priest thus
consecrates to God their lives and works and sufferings. "O
Lord, be in our thoughts, in our words, in our deeds, in our
tears and in our laughter. O Lord, let your presence be felt
in this house, and in those who enter therein, as it was
felt by John as You were baptized in the Jordan River."
(from the ritual)

PRAYER, recited by the priest: "Today the land and the sea
divide between them the joy of the world, and the world is
filled with rejoicing. The waters behold You, O Lord: the
waters behold You and they fear; the Jordan River turns back
its course as it beholds the fire of the Godhead coming down
upon it and entering it in the flesh; the Jordan River turns
back its course as it beholds the Holy Spirit descending in
the likeness of a dove, and hovering above it; the Jordan
River turns back its course as it beholds the Invisible made
visible, the Creator existing in the flesh, and the Master
in the likeness of a servant; the Jordan River turns back
its course, and the mountains shout with glee as they behold
God in the flesh. And the clouds give voice, and are filled
with awe by the One who is coming, Light of Light, true God
of true God; the One who, in the Jordan River, has drowned
the death of sin, the thorn of error, and the bond of Hades,
and granted the baptism of salvation to the world. So also
am I, your unworthy and sinful servant, encompassed by fear
as I proclaim your great wonders; and I cry out reverently
to you.


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