Orthodox Christians celebrate the Ascension

The Orthodox Christians observe the Feast of the Ascension on June 10. This feast, also known as Ascension Thursday or Ascension Day, commemorates the bodily Ascension of Jesus into heaven. It is celebrated 40 days after Jesus’ Resurrection, IPN reports.

The Divine Liturgy is held in churches in the morning. On the Ascension, the Christians greet each other saying “Christ has ascended”. The tradition of greeting each other with “Jesus has ascended!” and of answering “He has ascended indeed!” differs from region to region. In some places, the Christians greet each other this way during a day, while in others during three or even ten days. As on Easter, they paint eggs red and have Easter cake and bread on the holiday table.

In the Eastern Church, this feast is known in Greek as Analepsis, the “taking up”, and also as Ispas, deriving from the Slavic word ‘spasiteli’, which means Savior. On the Ascension, the faithful go to church to bless walnut tree branches.

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