Valley Forge, PA – Ten years later St. Sophia continues to host this annual Orthodox tradition along the Schuylkill River which is just minutes away from the church. Yesterday, the parishioners gathered following Epiphany Day church services along the banks of the river for the blessing of the waters.

Fr. Peter J. Thornberg gathered with his flock of parishioners following church service. The muddy banks were no deterrent to the faithful that gathered.

This observance commemorates Christ’s baptism by John the Forerunner in the River Jordan, and the beginning of Christ’s earthly ministry. In mystic commemoration of this event, the Great Blessing of Water is performed on this day, and the holy water so blessed is used by the local priest to bless the homes of the faithful.