Kodiak Daily Mirror - Orthodox Kodiak celebrates Christmas
  
Orthodox Kodiak celebrates Christmas
by James Brooks / editor@kodiakdailymirror.com
Jan 09, 2012 | 101 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Kenneth Michener leads the Christmas star out of Holy Resurrection Orthodox Cathedral on Saturday, Jan. 7, 2011. Saturday was Orthodox Christmas, and the star leads an annual procession of carolers across the city.
(James Brooks photo)
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KODIAK — They came slow and in groups, getting rides and helping each other from snow drifts, but 10 inches of snow couldn't keep Kodiak's Orthodox Christian worshippers from church on Saturday, Christmas day.

The Orthodox church follows the Julian calendar, and thus its Christmas falls two weeks later than the date celebrated by other Christians.

While that sets Orthodox Christians apart, Alaskan Orthodox worshippers have traditions that separate them even from their counterparts in Europe and Asia.

Foremost of these is the custom of starring, or Slaviq. Celebrants carry a large, colorful star from the church to the homes of those celebrating the holiday.

Accompanying the star are carolers who sing traditional Slavonic hymns.

On Saturday night in Kodiak, the star's first stop after leaving Holy Resurrection Orthodox Cathedral was the Alutiiq Museum, where almost 50 people gathered to sing and share conversation.

Contact Mirror editor James Brooks at editor@kodiakdailymirror.com.
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