Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (ERTA) – The feast of Timkat (Baptism in Amharic) was colorfully celebrated throughout Ethiopia yesterday.
Timkat, which celebrates the baptism of Jesus Christ in the River Jordan by John the Baptist, is the most important Christian holiday in Ethiopia.
The celebration attracts thousands of foreign tourists to the country annually.
The holiday was celebrated with various religious and traditional assortments in the capital.
On the eve of Timkat Thursday evening, Sunday school students adored in their colorful uniforms arrived at Ã¢â‚¬ËœJan MedaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢-the Epiphany site-chanting and singing.
They spent the night in procession in front of the Ã¢â‚¬ËœTabotÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s, a symbol of the Ark of Covenant containing the 10 Commandments, placed in specially put up tents.
Friday morning, the baptismal water at Ã¢â‚¬ËœJan MedaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ was blessed by his holiness Abune Paulos, Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church and archbishops, and sprinkled on the faithful gathered there.
Speaking on the occasion, Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, Abune Paulos called on the faithful to preserve Epiphany celebrations to the coming generations.
Deputy Mayor of Addis Ababa City, Abate Sitotaw and invited guests took part in the event.
Following the celebration, the Ã¢â‚¬ËœTabotsÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ were taken back to their respective churches in colorful processions.
The ceremony in Addis Ababa attracted a huge number of foreign tourists.