Ethiopians celebrate the festival of Timket

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Ethiopian Orthodox Christians have been celebrating the festival of Timket, or Epiphany, which commemorates the baptism of Jesus in the River Jordan.

People celebratingImage copyrightAFP
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In Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, thousands of worshippers marched through the streets on Friday, the eve of the festival, to the Jan Meda sports grounds.

Man with a drumImage copyrightAFP

Each church took its tabot, a model of the Ark of the Covenant that according to tradition contains the 10 Commandments, on the procession.

Religious trumpetersImage copyrightBBC/AMENSISA NEGERA
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Musicians playing traditional trumpets, or imbilta, led the way.

This symbolises the description in the Bible that trumpets were played when the Ark of the Covenant was being moved.

People in religious dressImage copyrightBBC/AMENSISA NEGERA
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PriestsImage copyrightBBC/AMENSISA NEGERA
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Church leaders, dressed in their religious robes and carrying crucifixes and umbrellas, then followed.

Ethiopian priestImage copyrightBBC/AMENSISA NEGERA
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Hands clappingImage copyrightBBC/AMENSISA NEGERA
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Spiritual singers, or azmari, chanted and clapped along to traditional praise songs known as mezmur.

Ethiopian crucifixImage copyrightBBC/AMENSISA NEGERA
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The worshippers then spent Friday night at Jan Meda and then on Saturday were sprinkled with holy water, re-enacting the baptism of Jesus.

BBC

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