Category: Media & Culture / January 18, 2013 4:13 PM EST
Worshippers from around the world, Israel and the West Bank made their way down the river bank and immersed themselves in the water, where Christian tradition says John the Baptist baptized Jesus.
Some historians identify this spot as the approximate site of the original baptism, situated alongside the international border between Israel and Jordan.
In Orthodox tradition, baptism is executed by immersion into the water three times.
While baptism can take place year round, the annual ceremony on Wednesday was led by the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem, Theophilos the Third, and took place simultaneously on both the West Bank and the East Bank (Jordan).
The Patriarch blessed a wreath that was thrown into the river, and later released a white dove.