On Sunday, January 6th, the Theopany of Our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ, as well as His baptism in the River Jordan by John the Forerunner, the Reverend Timothy Winegar and faithful of Elevation of the Holy Cross Parish in Sacramento gathered at the banks of the American River for the Great Blessing of Water. The American River is a 120 mile waterway that originates in the Sierra Nevada mountain range, and is known as the site where gold was discovered in 1848 that started the California Gold Rush. It flows into Folsom Lake just outside of Sacramento, and eventually confluences with the Sacramento River. By this confluence, the waters of the American flow into the San Francisco Bay Watershed. By flowing into the Bay, these waters then eventually join the Pacific Ocean and through the Pacific, reach the rest of the world. Thus, by blessing the river off of this rainy, rocky bank, the Orthodox faithful seen in these pictures invoke God's blessing on the living waters on the whole of His creation! "Great art Thou O Lord, and marvelous are Thy works, and there is no word sufficient to hymn Thy wonders!"
(photos courtesy of Melissa Dubovik)