15 February 2011, Tuesday, 10:29
author: Eugene Rakhimkulov
The Orthodox Christians celebrate one of the most ancient holidays today – the Candlemas Day.
The history of the Candlemas Day is closely connected with the event, remarkable for all Christians – the meeting of baby Jesus with the righteous elder Simeon in the Jerusalem’s church – the holiday’s name comes from this word.
According to the Bible legends Simeon was one of 70 elders, whom the Tsar of Egypt Ptolemy ordered to translate the books of the Old Testament from Jewish into Greek language. Being busy with the translation Simeon came across with the prophecy: “The Virgin will conceive and give birth to the Son”. Simeon started to doubt and decided the phrase was wrong because a virgin couldn’t give a birth. He already wanted to translate it in other way but suddenly the Angel appeared before him and said he had to believe the phrase and promised Simeon would reach the day Jesus Christ would be born and the elder would see Him.
The prophecy was fulfilled when after Jesus birth the parents brought the baby to the church for execution of the dedication riot. Simeon turned out to be in the church that moment and he offered up the prayer for he managed to reach this day. In spite of the anxiety the Candlemas Day was marked without special celebrities in the majority of the countries before the IV century. People started to pay special attention to this holiday after the earthquake in Byzantium in the year 544, when after the religious procession, held on the Candlemas Day, the disasters suddenly stopped. That time the Candlemas Day was included into the list of the most important Christian holidays and now this holiday is celebrated by the all branches of Christianity.