The 7th of January is known to the people under the name of “Saint-Ion” and together with the day of the 6th of January – “Boboteaza” – forms the end of the winter holidays. The Holy Scripture speaks of John the Baptist as the forerunner of our Lord Jesus Christ. He is the one who announced his coming. And he exhorted the Jews to repent. John is considered the protector of babies. Those who celebrate the feast hope for healthy children. They say that this day is a day of joy, and those who do not rejoice on this day will be sad all year round. Those who celebrate this day hope that their households will be protected from fire and animals – wild animals. It is said that on the morning of St. John the Baptist (St. John) every man must be sprayed with fresh water to prevent disease throughout the year. According to the folk tradition it is said that after John the cold days end or the cold is softened and the temperatures begin to rise.
Iordănite and Iordănealea
In certain areas of Romania, women gather at a host’s house where everyone brings something to eat and drink until the morning (Iordănite). Another custom that is celebrated on St. John’s Day is “Iordăneala”, a kind of Christmas carol.
St. John as eponym
Of the Romanians, over 300,000 bear the name Ioana and 140,000 bear the name Ionela. Over 11,000 are called Nela and over 6,000 are called Ionelia. For men, over 400,000 are named Ion, over 500,000 are named John and over 320,000 are named Ionţ. There are about 145,000 Romanians called Ionel and over 26,000 are called Nelu or Ionica.