Home > Religion > Holy Daze: Meskel (September 27th, 2012) – Ethiopian Orthodox Christian

Holy Daze: Meskel (September 27th, 2012) – Ethiopian Orthodox Christian

September 26th, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

Meskel is an annual religious festival celebrated in Ethiopian Orthodox and Eritrean Orthodox Churches to commemorate Saint Helena (mother of Constantine the Great) finding the True Cross (the cross upon which Jesus was crucified).  Typical celebrations include dancing, colourful processions, feasting and the lighting of a giant bonfire known as a Demera.  The lighting of the bonfire symbolizes how Saint Helena located the True Cross, by following smoke that led her to its location (although the myth surrounding the sources of this smoke seems to vary).  Meskel is an annual public holiday in Ethiopia.  It is a colourful and lively display that culminates in the most amazing spectacle of fire.  Check out this video that strings together an entire day into night of Meskel celebrations.  The end is quite spectacular, especially if you love the site of a great bonfire and fireworks.  Although, I suspect we couldn’t get away with quite so extravagant a bonfire in Canadian cottage country.

M. xo

Meskel Festival Highlights:

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