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Old-style Orthodox Church marks Beheading of St. John the Baptist

16:45 | 11.09.2022 Category: Social

Chisinau, 11 September /MOLDPRES/ - The old-style Orthodox Christians from Moldova today mark the Beheading of St. John the Baptist.    

This is the last holiday of the Church year, which ends on 13 September and is day of severe fasting for the Orthodox Christians from all over the world.

Son of Elizabeth and of priest Zechariah, St. John the Baptist is relative with Jesus Christ through the maternal line and was born six months before the Lord. He is known with the name Forerunner, for the fact that he announced the coming of  Christ. 

After the Lord’s Baptizing, St. John the Baptist was imprisoned by King Herod of Galilee. According to the tradition, at a feast occasioned by the marking of his birthday, Herod ordered the beheading of St. John the Baptist, at a demand by Herodias. St. John was reproving Herod for his unlawful living with Herodias, who was the wife of his brother. In her dreadful hatred, Herodias advised her daughter Salome, who danced and was liked by the guests and especially by Herod, to ask for the head of the Baptist as reward. As he was afraid that the Baptist could resurrect if the body was buried with his head, Herod gave to the apostles only the body of the saint, which was buried in Sebastia, while the head was buried by Herodias in her yard, at a big depth.       

According to the tradition, St. Joanna, the wife of Herod’s ruler, was the one who took the head of St. John the Baptist from Herodias’ yard and buried it in Jerusalem in the Mount of Olives, in a clay vessel. In the memory of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist, the Orthodox Church arranged the day of 11 September to be a day of severe fasting.      

Under the state register of the population, over 100,000 Moldovans mark their name day today.  

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