Workers in Russia found a severed head in a frozen river while they were preparing for an Orthodox Christian ritual.
The 19th of January is a day on the Julian calendar, according to the Russian Orthodox Church, when all water is holy. The celebration is marks the Epiphany and baptism of Christ.
An ice hole was being prepared in the river Jordan as it flows by the city of Saratov when the morbid discovery was made.
Local rescue services told a Russian news agency, “Around noon yesterday, rescuers and divers submerged to check the water ahead of Epiphany bathing, and discovered a bag containing a ball-like object.” The Emergencies Ministry, however, has not yet been able to confirm the report.
Despite temperatures getting as low as -30c thousands of Orthodox Christians plunge themselves into winter waters throughout Eastern Europe. Viktor Yushchenko, President of Ukraine, took part in the icy Epiphany ritual in the Dniper river by Kiev.
In Pure Spirit
Would you bathe in freezing waters in order to take part in a rite?