Timkat January 19 or 20 on Leap Year

lalibela_timketTimket means "baptism". Timket celebrates the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River. Is the Ethiopian Orthodox celebration of Epiphany. This festival is best known for its ritual reenactment of baptism which is similar to such (reenactments performed by numerous Christian pilgrims to the Holy Land when they visit the Jordan). During the ceremonies of Timkat, the Tabot, a model of the Ark of the Covenant, which is present on every Ethiopian altar (somewhat like the Western altar stone), is reverently wrapped in rich cloth and born in procession on the head of the priest. The Divine Liturgy is celebrated near a stream or pool early in the morning (around 2 AM). Then the nearby body of water is blessed towards dawn and sprinkled on the participants, some of whom enter the water and immerse themselves, symbolically renewing their baptismal vows.

This festival is a unique one since everyone believes that they should be dressed up in their finest clothing. It also has so many spiritual rhythmic songs.