Thousands Venerate St. John the Baptist in Sozopol


Thousands came to Sozopol, where relics of St. John the Baptist were recently uncovered, on the day the Eastern Orthodox Church marks St. Johns martyr death. Pilgrims included not only holidaymakers in and around Sozopol, but also people from across Bulgaria, as well as Romanians, Russians and Georgians. On August 29 the Eastern Orthodox Church commemorates the day king Herod ordered St. John the Baptists head cut off at the behest of his daughter Salome. St. John the Baptist is especially venerated by the Eastern Orthodox Christian Church. The principal day of veneration of the saint is January 7. St. John the Baptist - called also the Forerunner - is an imposing figure in the Christian New Testament. He was the last to prophecize the coming of Jesus Christ - and the one to baptize the young Jesus in the river Jordan. According to the Bible, it was thus that St. John the Forerunner prophesized about Christ: "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and fire" (Matthew 3:11).