Greek Orthodox Patriarch Leads Christmas Midnight Mass in Bethlehem
© REUTERS / MUSSA ISSA QAWASMAMembers of clergy gather as Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilos III arrives at the Church of the Nativity to celebrate Christmas according to the Eastern Orthodox calendar, in Bethlehem in the Israeli occupied West Bank, January 6, 2022
The Catholic and a number of Orthodox churches celebrate Christmas on 25 December, while the Jerusalem Orthodox Church, as well as the Russian Orthodox Church, adheres to the Julian calendar, according to which Christmas falls on 7 January.
The Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilos III is serving the Christmas mass in Bethlehem, Palestine, on Thursday night, which completes the Christmas Celebrations for local Christians.
The mass is held in the Church of the Nativity, which is considered along with the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem as one of the main Christian shrines. It is jointly managed by the Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox and Armenian Apostolic Churches.
Bethlehem is believed by Christians around the world as the birthplace of Jesus Christ. The city, venerated also by Jews and Muslims, is located on the West Bank of River Jordan, 10 kilometres from Jerusalem.
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