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Orthodox New Year in Canada

Many Orthodox Christian Canadians celebrate the New Year on January 1 in the Julian calendar, which pre-dates the more widely used Gregorian calendar. This date falls on or near January 14 in the Gregorian calendar.

Candle holder and orthodox icons in background
Candles lit in an Orthodox Christian church.
Candles lit in an Orthodox Christian church.
©iStockphoto.com/Lisa Valder

What Do People Do?

Many Orthodox Christians in Canada observe the New Year based on January 1 in the Julian calendar, which is on or near to January 14 in the Gregorian calendar. However, there are also Orthodox Christians who observe New Year’s Day  (January 1) based on the revised Julian calendar, which correlates with the Gregorian calendar. Orthodox New Year celebrations include social gatherings and dinners featuring traditional activities and dishes from other parts of the world such as Russia or Ukraine. Many Orthodox Christians also attend special New Year’s Day liturgies at their churches.

Public Life

Orthodox New Year’s Day falls on or near January 14 and is not a nationwide public holiday in Canada.  However, parking and traffic around some Orthodox Christian churches where special New Year liturgies are held may be busy around this time of the year.


The Orthodox New Year is widely known as the Old New Year. It is marked as January 1 in the Julian calendar, which was used before the Gregorian calendar. The Orthodox New Year does not remain static in the Gregorian calendar because there are shifts between the Julian and Gregorian calendars over time. For example, the Old New Year falls on January 14 between 1901 and 2100 but it will move again in time if the Julian calendar is still used.

The Julian calendar was revised in 1923 and this version is more in line with the Gregorian calendar. Some Orthodox churches follow the revised Julian calendar but many Orthodox churches still follow the more traditional Julian calendar, which has the original dates for Christian observances prior to the Gregorian calendar’s introduction.


The Orthodox New Year has been symbolized or mentioned in various Eastern European art, including Russian or Ukrainian works.

About Orthodox New Year in other countries

Read more about Orthodox New Year.

Orthodox New Year Observances

WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday TypeWhere It is Observed
ThuJan 142010Orthodox New YearOrthodox 
FriJan 142011Orthodox New YearOrthodox 
SatJan 142012Orthodox New YearOrthodox 
MonJan 142013Orthodox New YearOrthodox 
TueJan 142014Orthodox New YearOrthodox 
WedJan 142015Orthodox New YearOrthodox 
ThuJan 142016Orthodox New YearOrthodox 
SatJan 142017Orthodox New YearOrthodox 
SunJan 142018Orthodox New YearOrthodox 
MonJan 142019Orthodox New YearOrthodox 
TueJan 142020Orthodox New YearOrthodox 

Quick Facts

Many Orthodox Christian churches in countries such as Canada celebrate New Year’s Day on January 14 in the Gregorian calendar.

Orthodox New Year 2018

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Orthodox New Year 2019

Monday, January 14, 2019


Name in other languages

Orthodox New YearEnglish
Nouvel An OrthodoxeFrench
Orthodoxes NeujahrGerman

Alternative name

Old New Year

List of dates for other years

Related holiday

Other holidays in January 2019 in Canada

Fun Holidays on January 14, 2019

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