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Timkat. Source: Wallpaper Flare / CC by SA.

The Challenging Rituals of Ethiopia’s Christian Timkat Ceremony (Video)

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The Ethiopian Orthodox Church is a unique branch of Christianity that traces its roots back to the earliest days of the faith. For those who follow this ancient religion, the annual Timkat ceremony is one of the most important events on the calendar. It marks the Feast of the Epiphany and celebrates the baptism of Christ in a way that is different from any other Christian tradition. At the center of the Timkat festival are sacred replicas of the Ark of the Covenant, which are carried through the streets of the city of Lalibela by the most senior priests in the church.

For young men like Kip Cobb, a would-be priest who hopes to take part in the ceremony, the road to Timkat is a long and challenging one. They must demonstrate total commitment to their calling and complete faith and prove themselves worthy of this great honor. This is everything you need to know about the ancient and unique world of Ethiopian Orthodoxy, and the true meaning of the Timkat celebration.

Top image: Timkat. Source: Wallpaper Flare / CC by SA.

By Robbie Mitchell

Robbie Mitchell's picture


I’m a graduate of History and Literature from The University of Manchester in England and a total history geek. Since a young age, I’ve been obsessed with history. The weirder the better. I spend my days working as a freelance... Read More

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