Minelik wrote:Shabbo, not to burst your excitement.. but Mesqel is colorfully celebrated in Ethiopia to symbolize the finding of the TRUE CROSS... ( Thanks to Ethiopian Queen Eleni). With the grace and will of the lord Jesus Christ, the true cross is now located in Wollo, Ethiopia remember Ethiopian. I wonder why shabbos got to do with this holiday
Ethiopians are generally very religious. I’ve arrived in Addis for 3 weeks and I’ve had a few Holy days or “Holidays” already. Life is good.Last Thursday night I joined an estimated 200 000 + people at Meskel Square to celebrate the Meskel holiday. Meskel, is the religious celebration of the discovery of the True Cross in the 4th century by Queen Eleni aka Saint Helena. According to the Orthodox story, Queen Eleni was inspired by a dream to light a giant bonfire of wood. And when she did, the smoke rose up high in the sky and returned to the ground at the exact same spot where the Cross had been buried. Aside from Easter, Meskel is the largest religious celebration of the year. This year’s celebrations were marked by the lighting of a huge bonfire to re-enact the finding of the True Cross and a beautiful display of fireworks for the Millennium. Thousands of spectators braved the mud from the rainy season, huge crowds and random body searches by the Federal Police. We were not disappointed. The celebrations preceding the climatic bonfire were absolutely beautiful. Imagine standing shoulder-to-shoulder, toe-to-toe with thousands of onlookers wading in mud in peace, eagerly awaiting the cue to light their candles. In the distance I could see people passing along their flame to one another. Moments later, I was surrounded by a sea of flickering candle flames. The warm glow from the candles and the soft chanting of believers transported me to an incredibly peaceful place. The atmosphere inspired me to pray. And during that moment, I couldn’t hear anything but my words to God. Though I’m not an Orthodox Christian, it didn’t matter. You either believe or not. Frankly, it’s the same God so why does it matter if I’m Non-Denominational or not. I was so encouraged by this sight of tolerance: absolute strangers, Ethiopians and Foreigners, standing centimeters away from one another passing the flame and just enjoying each other’s company. It’s possible, anything is possible if people are genuinely compassionate. It was amazing.
Helena's birthplace is not known with certainty. The sixth-century historian Procopius is the earliest authority for the statement that Helena was a native of Drepanum, in the province of Bithynia in Asia Minor.
Fed_Up wrote:Enqua " NemeSqel " abtshakum ...
Enkuan "Lemesqelu " aderesachihu.
Taddesse Tamrat discusses a tradition that early in his reign Dawit campaigned against Egypt, reaching as far north as Aswan; in response the Emir forced the Patriarch of Alexandria, Matthew I, to send a deputation to Dawit to persuade him to retire back to his kingdom. Taddesse concludes, "There seems to be little or no doubt that, on the eve of the advent of the Burji dynasty of Mamluk Egypt, King Dawit had in fact led his troops beyond the northern frontiers of his kingdom, and created much havoc among the Muslim inhabitants of the area who had been within the sphere of influence of Egypt since the thirteenth century." He apparently had a much friendlier relationship with the Sultan's successor, for according to the medieval historian al-Maqrizi Dawit sent 22 camels laden with gifts to Berkuk, the first Sultan of the Burji dynasty.
He confronted the problem of raids from the Muslim kingdoms on his eastern border with numerous counter attacks on those kingdoms. According to al-Maqrizi, in 1403 Emperor Dawit pursued the Sultan of Adal, Sa'ad ad-Din II to Zeila where he killed Sa'ad ad-Din, and sacked Zeila; however, another contemporary source dates the death of Sa'ad ad-Din to 1415, and gives the credit to Emperor Yeshaq.
A noted horseman, Dawit was killed when he was kicked in the head by one of his horses. His body was interred in the monastery of St. Stephen on Daga Island in Lake Tana.
The Emperor Dawit was an enthusiastic Christian. He dealt with a revolt of the Beta Israel in Tigray, and encouraged missionary work in Gojjam. According to E. A. Wallis Budge, during his reign a piece of the True Cross arrived in Ethiopia. He also made endowments to the Ethiopian Church: three charters survive of grants he made of lands in Wolqayt, Serae, Adiyabo, Shire, Addi Arkay, northern Semien, the Gar'alta, Manbarta, and Karnesem which lies north of present-day Asmara.
During his reign, two surviving examples of illustrated manuscripts were produced. One is a translation of the Miracles of Mary which had been written in Arabic, done at the command of Emperor Dawit; this is the oldest surviving illustrated book commissioned by an Ethiopian Emperor. The other, described as "one of the most beautiful illustrated books of the period" is a copy of the gospels, which is now at the monastery of Saint Gabriel on Kebran Island in southern Lake Tana.
Semira wrote:W'qaw is right. the founding of the cross (Mesqel) is celebrated by both Orthodox and catholics. the event took place before Orthodixy and Catholicism was split. And Eleni is the mother of Constantine (the roman ceasar). she is not ethiopian at all. May be Belaynesh took the version of the name "Eleni" as ethiopian. I do not know if Lutherans celebrate it. but certainly as my friend W'qaw said, Lutherans are much different and more sensible than the pente wierdos who are traced their Origin in America and Canada.
As Belaynesh said, part of the Mesqel was brought to Ethiopia by King Dawit in 15th century and reside in Gishen Maryam, Wollo. I had the privilage to visit it dozen times as part of my family still live in that vicinity. Ethiopian Kings during the crussade era stayed neutral when catholics battle against Salah adin and his army for the battle of Jerusalem which ended by the victory of Salah-adin. It is said that Saladin gave Ethiopian kings properties in Jerusalem (Der-sultan) and many other treasures including part of the cross. Mediaval ethiopian kings were smarter than Legesse in terms of dealing with the Muslims
Happy Mesqel and enjoy this spiritual Hymn.
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