The Holy Light, an Orthodox Easter tradition also referred to as the ‘Holy Fire’, arrived in Cyprus on a private flight from Jerusalem on Saturday evening and was received by Defence Minister Charalambos Petrides along with Bishop of Vostra Timotheos at the old Larnaca airport.
On arrival, and after being received by the Archbishop in Nicosia, the light is multiplied and distributed to churches, hospitals and other places for Easter services. The effort to have the light flown to Cyprus was in collaboration with the organisation SupportCY and United Cypriot Bikers.
According to tradition, the Holy Light comes from the ‘blue fire’ that is said to emanate from within the burial site of Jesus in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. The Orthodox Patriarch there lights his candle from the ‘blue fire’ and passes it on to the congregation present at the annual ceremony.
People who light their candles from the Holy Light can carry on the practice for 40 days after Easter if they wish.
Cyprus is one of several countries following this religious tradition, together with Armenia, Georgia, Greece, Serbia, Bulgaria, Russia, Montenegro, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan, all of which fly the Holy Light to their country on special flights.