Ukrainians celebrate Vodokhreshche in extreme cold

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Would you jump in a water if it is -3°C outside? Photo: Olena Makarenko 

Culture, Ukraine

Article by: Olena Makarenko

On 19 January, Vodokhreshche (Epiphany) is celebrated across Ukraine.

You might think that all these people are crazy adrenaline junkies. In fact they are ordinary Ukrainians who are confident that they will not get ill on this day.
The origins of the holiday go to the Biblical events when Jesus Christ was Baptised by John the Baptist in the river Jordan.
These people  are not afraid of  climate differences between Ukraine and the place Jesus was Baptised. It’s believed that this day the water has healing powers, so it will cure disease and will prevent illness from the cold water.
It’s noteworthy that the end of January is often the coldest period in Ukraine.
These pictures are taken in Kyiv when the temperature was -3°C.

Epiphany is the last holiday of the Christmas cycle. Ukrainians start celebrating Epiphany on the eve of January 18: January 18: “Hungry Kutya” or Second Holy Night: traditions and customs

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

Vodohresche in Kyiv

All photos by Olena Makarenko

 

Edited by: Alya Shandra

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  • Alex George

    Insane!

  • Quartermaster

    No offense madam, but I would not do anything like that.