117 Russians Hospitalized After Drinking Holy Water

Epiphany celebration leads to acute intestinal pain for many

By DarkFrancis,  Newser User

Posted Jan 25, 2010 8:21 AM CST | Promoted on Newser Jan 25, 2010 8:21 AM CST

(User Submitted) – More than 100 Russian Orthodox believers were hospitalized after drinking holy water during last week's Epiphany celebrations in the eastern city of Irkutsk. A Siberian official today said that 117 people, including 48 children, were in the hospital complaining of severe intestinal pain after drinking water from wells around a local church whose source is a stagnant lake. Many Russians believe that any water obtained on Epiphany is holy, despite most Russian tap water being undrinkable, reports the AP.

A woman plunges into an icy pond to mark the upcoming Epiphany in Kuzminki park in  southeastern Moscow, Monday, Jan. 18, 2010.
A woman plunges into an icy pond to mark the upcoming Epiphany in Kuzminki park in southeastern Moscow, Monday, Jan. 18, 2010.   (AP Photo)
Russian Orthodox priest, right, and  believer  help a girl to get out of ice cold water after plunging into icy pond to mark the upcoming Epiphany.
Russian Orthodox priest, right, and believer help a girl to get out of ice cold water after plunging into icy pond to mark the upcoming Epiphany.   (AP Photo/Mikhail Metzel)
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