St John the Baptist

St John the Baptist Quick Facts - AU

AKA NameThe Nativity of St. John the Baptist, The Nativity of the Venerable and Glorious Prophet and Forerunner John the Baptist
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2024 Date24 June 2024
2025 Date24 June 2025

Saint John the Baptist

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St John the Baptist History

The observance of Saint John the Baptist is a significant Christian event held to honor and tribute the life and contributions of this influential biblical figure. As a cousin of Jesus Christ, St. John the Baptist is widely recognized for his role in prophesying and paving the way for the Savior. Revered for his simple lifestyle and ardent faith, he earned the moniker The Forerunner. The Observance reflects upon his persona, moral virtues, and crucial part in the initiation of Jesus' public ministry.

The origin of this Observance dates back to the Christianization of Europe in the 5th century. Focusing on St. John's impact on Christianity, the event encompasses the importance of his doctrine of repentance in a tumultuous world. Intriguingly for Australians, St. John's message can serve as a powerful guiding light to navigate the complexities and challenges of modern life. His wisdom emphasises the essence of inner spirituality, humility, and untiring commitment to truth, virtues which hold relevance even today despite any regional, cultural, or social disparities.

Across the vast Australian landscape, the Observance of Saint John the Baptist unfolds with a sense of quiet introspection and reflection, manifesting in prayer meetings, sermons, and discussions centered around his life and teachings. Amid the fast-paced urban life, this occasion presents an opportunity to pause and ponder the core values of Christianity, drawing upon St. John as a remarkable embodiment of faith. The observance is held on June 24th each year, providing an apt mid-year moment for the awakening of one's spirituality and moral encouragement to cultivate a more meaningful and purposeful life.

St John the Baptist facts

  • In the first chapter of Luke, the father of St. John, Zachary, is approached by an angel who tells him that he and Elizabeth, even though they were old, would have a child. Zachary didn't believe the angel right away, and was unable to speak until after John was born.
  • When Mary, the mother of Jesus, went to Elizabeth to congratulate her on her pregnancy, John leaped with joy in her womb. (Luke 1:44). Mary was pregnant with Jesus at the time.
  • Saint John the Baptist is known for baptizing Jesus Christ in the Jordan River, marking the beginning of Jesus' public ministry.
  • Constructed in 1848, Saint John the Baptist is one of the oldest standing churches in Adelaide. The church is also associated with Mary MacKillop, Australia's first saint, as she had once taught at the adjoining school in the 1860s.

Top things to do in Australia for St John the Baptist's Day

  • In Mark 1:7, John is described as wearing camel's hair and eating only locusts and honey. Enjoy something with honey to honor John the Baptist.
  • Travel to Basque Country (area in north-central Spain and south-western France) or look for a Basque community in the United States to celebrate the night before the Feast of John the Baptist with a bonfire. The celebration combines the feast day with the Basque summer solstice.
  • As St. John the Baptist is often associated with water, fish and seafood dishes are a popular choice for today. You can prepare a barbeque with a selection of local Australian seafood, such as prawns, barramundi, or snapper.
  • Make a punch using Australian fruits such as oranges, lemons, and limes, mixed with fruit juices, and a splash of your preferred spirit (if desired). Serve over ice, garnished with mint leaves and fresh fruit slices.

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