Bulgaria Celebrates St. Athanasius Day on January 18
Today. January 18, the Bulgarian Orthodox Church venerates St. Athanasius, also called Saint Athanasius of Alexandria or Saint Athanasius the Apostolic, (born c. 293, Alexandria—died May 2, 373, Alexandria), theologian, ecclesiastical statesman, and Egyptian national leader.
He was the chief defender of Christian orthodoxy in the 4th-century battle against Arianism, the heresy that the Son of God was a creature of like, but not of the same, substance as God the Father. His important works include The Life of St. Antony, On the Incarnation, and Four Orations Against the Arians.
For the holiday Father Peter from the Blagoevgrad church of "Presentation of the Virgin Mary" commented:
"On January 18, we celebrate St. Athanasius and St. Cyril of Alexandria - great scholars, great spiritual leaders and colossuses of orthodoxy, who laid the foundation for all the truths on which the Orthodox Church rests”.
In the folk calendar, the holiday is marked as a harbinger of the coming spring.
Over 60,000 namesakes of Athanasius celebrate their Name Day in Bulgaria on January 18.
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