Orthodox Christians Celebrate Feast of St. Demetrius and the Begining of Winter
Orthodox Christians in Bulgaria, Greece and other churches observing the Gregorian calendar are celebrating Thursday the holiday of St Demetrius.
Due to his Slavic origin the saint is honoured by all Slavic peoples and for the Bulgarians and Serbs he is the patron of the entire Slavonic world.
Known as Dimitrovden in Bulgaria - meaning the Day of St Dimitar - the feast is an important church and traditional holiday.
St Demetrius of Thessaloniki, a Christian martyr who lived in the 4th century, is an important saint for Greeks, Bulgarians, Serbs, and Russians.In Greece, he is seen as the patron saint of Thessaloniki, having allegedly safeguarded the city throughout centuries of foreign invasion.
In Bulgaria's Veliko Tarnovo, people are celebrating the 1185-6 uprising of bolyar brothers Asen and Petar, who took St. Demetrius as their patron, and went on to found the Second Bulgarian Empire.
Thursday, October 26, Bulgarians bearing the names Dimitar, Dimitrina, Dimitra, Dimo and derivatives are celebrating their name day.
In Bulgarian folk beliefs, the feast of St Dimitar signals the inception of winter.
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