Metropolis of NJ Hosts "Cross Dive" Tradition on the Sunday After the Exaltation of the Cross

Metropolis of NJ Hosts "Cross Dive" Tradition on the Sunday After the Exaltation of the Cross

Instituted in Asbury Park in 1947 by the late Archbishop (and later Ecumenical Patriarch) Athenagoras, the 75-year old tradition of the Blessing of the Waters and Κατάδυσις of the Cross, also known as the “Cross Dive,” resumed on Sunday, September 18, 2022. Faithful from across the Metropolis of NJ joined His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America, His Grace Bishop Apostolos of Medeia, Chancellor V. Rev. Archimandrite Christoforos Oikonomidis, and clergy from the Metropolis for Divine Liturgy in the Great Auditorium of Ocean Grove before heading down to the beach.

“Here at the sea’s edge, by the power of the Holy, Precious and Life-giving Cross, we have the opportunity to sweeten much more than salt water. We can sweeten the very substance of our lives. The Cross renews our souls and heals our inner wounds. The Cross lifts up our weary souls and gives us strength. The Cross enables us to forgive ourselves and to forgive others.The Cross enables us to forgive ourselves and to forgive others. For as the Lord was being nailed to it, His first words were: 'Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.' Therefore, let us all bow down deeply with reverent devotion, while glorifying Christ and venerating His Invincible Weapon of Peace – the Holy Cross. And remember: God is here; God is everywhere; God is always," said the Archbishop in his Homily. (Full Homily)

After the crosses were thrown in the water, GOYAns from each of the four divisions raced to find them. Arianna Boutsikaris (Junior Girl) from St. Barbara Church in Toms River; Christina Skoulariotis (Senior Girl) from Saint Athanasios Church in Paramus; Kosta Hantoulis (Junior Boy) and Chris Vlahos (Senior Boy), both from Saint George in Piscataway, retrieved the Crosses.




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