'Meskel' - The Finding of the True Cross


This magnificent celebration and ceremony takes place in commemoration of the discovery of the True Cross by Queen Helena (Saint Helena) in the fourth century. It was believed that Queen Eleni had a revelation in a dream and in it she was told that she shall make a bonfire and that the smoke would show her where the true cross was buried. So she ordered the people of Jerusalem to bring wood and make a huge pile. After adding frankincense to it the bonfire was lit and the smokes rouse high up to the sky and returned to the ground, exactly to the spot where the Cross had been buried. After this miraculous event finding of the true cross (Demera-procession) is celebrated in a colorful way in the early evening the day before Meskel or on the day itself. This festival also attracts a lot of people from here in Ethiopia and all around the world. The festival is known as a Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross.

Meskel is celebrated on (September 27, Gregorian calendar, or September 28 in leap years)