Taking a leap (and dive) of faith in Greek tradition
Monday, January 12th 2009, 5:21 AM
Now that's faith.
Whoever retrieves the cross is thought to have good luck for the year.
The deep-freeze dive has been a tradition since St. Nicholas was founded in 1916.
The church, which was located on Cedar St. in lower Manhattan, was destroyed on 9/11.
Its temporary home is at Sts. Constantine and Helen Cathedral in Brooklyn.
Three men who'd planned to participate in the cross dive backed out, leaving Apostolakis as the sole swimmer.
The Rider University student is a member of the school's diving team and has fished the cross out of the water at four previous celebrations.
"It wasn't as cold as the other years," he said modestly. The air temperature Sunday afternoon was 30 degrees, according to AccuWeather.com.
His mother, Pauline Apostolakis, watched proudly from the shore.
"He likes to keep tradition," she said.