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    Christians in Bulgaria celebrated more than a thousand years of Cyrillic Alphabet in style. On May 24, more than 50 people joined “In the Beginning Was the Word,” a seven-hour Bible reading marathon in the country’s capital, Sofia, Evangelical Focus reports.

    Organizers of the event promoted this different kind of marathon to raise awareness to the Bulgarian society that the Cyrillic alphabet was created so the Word of God could be accessible to many.

    “More than ever, today we desperately need to recover our Christian identity,” said Alexander Urumov of Word Association.

    Attendees took turn reading Bible scriptures in the center of Sofia. People from different walks of life joined the historic event. Some public figures were seen in the marathon, including TV host and theologian Goran Blagoev, former Minister of Healthcare in Bulgaria Dr. Ilko Semerdjiev, and writer Teodora Dimova.

    “Reading out loud includes a number of our senses,” Dr. Semerdjiev said. “It evokes our abstract thinking, and it challenges the creative and emotional dimensions of our brain.”

    In 863, missionary brothers Cyril and Methodius wanted to make the Gospel understandable to the Slavic people. Working with different groups, the missionaries developed a new alphabet based on Greek letters.

    Today, 1,150 years after its first usage, Cyrillic is still used in Bulgaria. Aside from Latin and Greek, Cyrillic is an official alphabet in European official documents and currency.

    The organizers of the Bible reading marathon plan to make it a yearly gathering and hopefully, other towns could also host the event.

    “More than ever, today we desperately need to recover our Christian identity,” said Alexander Urumov of Word Association.

    Evangelicalfocuscom. (2017). Evangelicalfocus.