A Pan-Orthodox Ohio River blessing was held Sunday afternoon at the Steubenville Marina, with parishioners and priests from St. Nicholas and All Saints Orthodox churches in Weirton; Holy Trinity and Holy Resurrection Orthodox Churches in Steubenville; and the Orthodox Church of the Life-Giving Fountain in Martins Ferry gathering on the observation deck, despite the wintry chill. The blessing is done in conjunction with the Feast of Holy Theophany, where Christ was baptized by John in the Jordan River, thereby sanctifying the waters, according to the priests. The river blessing and service have become an annual January event, bringing together the Orthodox churches and their faithful for a joint service.

— Linda Harris


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