The greatest festival of the year falling on 19 January, just two weeks after the Ethiopian Christmas. It is commemorated of Christ baptism in the Jordan river by John the baptist. The next day is devoted to the feast of St. Michael, the arc angle. Since October and the end of the rains, the country dries up steadily. The sun blazes down from a clear blue sky and the festival of Timket always takes place in glorious weather.
Enormous effort is put in the occasion. Tej and Tella (Ethiopian local drinks) are brewed, especial bread is baked, gifts are prepared for the children and new clothes purchased or old clothes mended and laundered. Everyone, men and women and children appear resplendent for the three-day celebration.
Dressed in dazzling white traditional dresses, the locals provide a dramatic contrast to the jewel colours of the ceremonial velvet and stains of the priest’s robe and sequined velvet umbrellas. On the eve of 18th January, the priests remove the Tabot from each church and bless the water of the pool or river where the next days where celebration will take place.