Candlemas is an American Christian holiday celebrated annually on February 2nd. Divine services are held in temples, and people light their candles to receive a blessing.
The Christian holiday Candlemas is one of the oldest. The first mention of its celebration dates back to the 4th century AD. in Jerusalem. Its spread across the territory of modern Europe and subsequently the United States is connected with one story.
There was an outbreak of plague in Europe around 540 AD. Constantinople suffered especially from it. The epidemic literally claimed the lives of thousands of people in a very short period of time. During the celebration of Candlemas in the city, the ruler Justinian the Great ordered large-scale prayer processions to be organized, and all parishioners had to hold a lit candle. Thus, it was believed that the prayers of people would reach God, and he would help get rid of the deadly infection. After the plague epidemic subsided, the holiday spread throughout the Roman Empire, smoothly moving to other countries.
The appearance of the holiday in the United States is correlated with the 19th century, when the Christian faith was actively spreading in the country. Today, many folk beliefs are associated with this holiday. It is believed that if the weather is clear on this day, and the sun immediately comes out in the morning, then we should expect the imminent arrival of spring.
- The word “candlemas” should be understood as “meeting”. This follows from biblical tales, when the little Jesus in the Temple of Jerusalem was met by the elder Simeon and the prophetess Anna.
- In folk beliefs, the Meeting of the Lord is perceived as a meeting of winter and spring. According to the weather that day, they judged the imminent arrival of heat or the continuation of a cold winter.
How to celebrate
Attend church services held at Candlemas. Be sure to light a candle and read the prayers. Keep a close eye on the weather today. Try to predict how soon spring will come this year.
Tell about the holiday on social networks. Ask other users how they spend their day.
When is Candlemas celebrated in 2024?
Candlemas is observed on February 2 each year.