6th May – St George’s Day in Bulgaria
Being among the most famous Christian figures St George is believed to be born in Kapadokia (present Turkey) around the year 284 and died in present Israel in 305. Nothing of the man himself is known certainly but according to the chronicles he was a soldier of noble birth who was put to death by the Roman Emperor Diocletian for protesting against the persecution of Christians. Despite his young age George held the prestigious rank of tribune in the Roman army and was the Emperor’s favourite before manifesting his religious affiliation. After his death George rapidly became venerated throughout Christendom as an example of bravery in defence of the poor and the defenceless.
On St George’s Day (6th May) the Bulgarian Army flags are being consecrated by the priests in the city squares. Outside the religious tradition of St George’s Day it is also the symbol of spring revival. People go to church and bring home geranium to hang it over the gate where they leave it until the next spring as a symbol of health and prosperity.