In Christian religion, different types of feast are being celebrated for different purpose.
When is This celebrated?
Feast of John the Baptist is celebrated is on 24th June, just six months and one day before Christmas.
Why is This celebrated?
Feast Of John the Baptist or often called as Nativity of St. John the Baptist is held to celebrate the birth of Jesus’ cousin whose name is John the Baptist.
Who are the celebrators?
Following are the communities who celebrate this day:
- Oriental Orthodox
- Eastern Orthodox
- Eastern Catholic Churches
- Roman Catholics
Customaries of celebration
Beyond this religious celebration, many customaries are involved which also compliment the celebration of midsummer, which are known to be the midsummer festivals of pre-Christian pagan This festival takes place almost during the same period. During the time of seventh century, Saint Eligius asked the new converter to avoid the midsummer festival and to adopt the customaries of St. John the Baptist’s birth celebration.
- Now it is evident from the date of celebration that Feast of John the Baptist is held on 24th June which is six months and one day before the Christmas.
- Then it is also claimed why the celebration is not on 25th June, just six months before the Christmas.
- Thus, sometimes it is said that Church Authorities was in a mood to convert the pagan celebration of solstice into Christian celebration. Due to this, Saint John's feast is celebrated beforehand in order to substitute the former pagan festival.
- But later on, this decision was found to be taken mistakenly during that time.
- With more clarity, solstice was started being celebrated at the mid of the June and this happened due to the inappropriateness of the Julian calendar.
- Then according to the Gregorian calendar, during the time of 1582, solstice took place on 23rd June.
- Thus, it is said that the reason for celebrating this festival on 24th June due to the counting in roman method
- Christmas was celebrated on the 8th day before the first day (Kalends) of January.
- In the same way, Feast of John the Baptist used to be celebrated on the 8th day before the first day of the July.
- But according to the Germanic way of counting, month of June consists of 30 days, thus Feast of John the Baptist is celebrated on 24th June.
- Again according to the Armenian Apostolic Church, Feast Of John the Baptist is celebrated on 15th January.
- Here the celebration is concerned with the nativity as well as the Baptism of Christ