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Good Friday

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Good Friday
Type Christian
Significance Commemorates the crucifixion and death of Jesus Christ
Date

Friday immediately preceding Easter Sunday

Celebrations No traditional celebrations
Observances Prayer and vigil services, fasting, almsgiving, some family gatherings
Related to Passover, Christmas (which celebrates the birth of Jesus), Septuagesima, Quinquagesima, Shrove Tuesday, Ash Wednesday, Lent, Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday and Holy Saturday which lead up to Easter, Easter Sunday (primarily), Ascension, Pentecost, Whit Monday, Trinity Sunday, and Corpus Christi which follow it

Good Friday, also called Holy Friday, Black Friday, or Great Friday, is a holiday observed primarily by adherents to Christianity commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus and his death at Calvary. The holiday is observed during Holy Week as part of the Paschal Triduum on the Friday preceding Easter Sunday, and often coincides with the Jewish observance of Passover.

Based on the scriptural details of the Sanhedrin Trial of Jesus, the Crucifixion of Jesus was most probably on a Friday. The estimated year of Good Friday is AD 33, by two different groups, and originally as AD 34 by Isaac Newton via the differences between the Biblical and Julian Calendars and the crescent of the moon.[1][2][3][4][5][6] A third method, using a completely different astronomical approach based on a lunar Crucifixion darkness and eclipse model (consistent with Apostle Peter's reference to a "moon of blood" in Acts 2:20) arrives at the same date, namely Friday April 3, AD 33.[7][8]

Biblical accounts Edit

According to the accounts in the Gospels, Jesus was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane by the Temple Guards through the guidance of his disciple, Judas Iscariot. Judas received money (30 pieces of silver) (Matthew 26:14-16) for betraying Jesus and told the guards that whomever he kisses is the one they are to arrest. Jesus is brought to the house of Annas, who is the father-in-law of the current high priest, Caiaphas. There he is interrogated with little result, and sent bound to Caiaphas the high priest, where the Sanhedrin had assembled (John 18:1-24).

Conflicting testimony against Jesus is brought forth by many witnesses, to which Jesus answers nothing. Finally the high priest adjures Jesus to respond under solemn oath, saying "I adjure you, by the Living God, to tell us, are you the Anointed One, the Son of God?" Jesus testifies in the affirmative, "You have said it, and in time you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Almighty, coming on the clouds of Heaven." The high priest condemns Jesus for blasphemy, and the Sanhedrin Trial of Jesus concurs with a sentence of death (Matthew 26:57-66). Peter also denies Jesus three times during the interrogations. Jesus already knew that Peter would deny him three times. See the article Sanhedrin Trial of Jesus regarding the two trials, one at night, the other in the morning and how their timing may affect the day of Good Friday.

In the morning, the whole assembly brings Jesus to the Roman governor Pontius Pilate, under charges of subverting the nation, opposing taxes to Caesar, and making himself a king (Luke 23:1-2). Pilate authorizes the Jewish leaders to judge Jesus according to their own Law and execute sentencing; however, the Jewish leaders reply that they are not allowed by the Romans to carry out a sentence of death (John 18:31).

Pilate questions Jesus, and tells the assembly that there is no basis for sentencing. Upon learning that Jesus is from Galilee, Pilate refers the case to the ruler of Galilee, King Herod, who was in Jerusalem for the Passover Feast. Herod questions Jesus but receives no answer; Herod sends Jesus back to Pilate. Pilate tells the assembly that neither he nor Herod have found guilt in Jesus; Pilate resolves to have Jesus whipped and released (Luke 23:3-16).

It was a custom during the feast of Passover for the Romans to release one prisoner as requested by the Jews. Pilate asks the crowd whom they would like to be released. Under the guidance of the chief priests, the crowd asks for Barabbas, who had been imprisoned for committing murder during an insurrection. Pilate asks what they would have him do with Jesus, and they demand, "Crucify him" (Mark 15:6-14). Pilate's wife had seen Jesus in a dream earlier that day; she forewarns Pilate to "have nothing to do with this righteous man" (Matthew 27:19).

Pilate has Jesus flogged, then brings him out to the crowd to release him. The chief priests inform Pilate of a new charge, demanding Jesus be sentenced to death "because he claimed to be God's son." This possibility filled Pilate with fear, and he brought Jesus back inside the palace and demanded to know from where he came (John 19:1-9).

Coming before the crowd one last time, Pilate declares Jesus innocent, washing his own hands in water to show he has no part in this condemnation. Nevertheless, Pilate hands Jesus over to be crucified in order to forestall a riot (Matthew 27:24-26). The sentence written is "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews." Jesus carries his cross to the site of execution (assisted by Simon of Cyrene), called the place of the Skull, or "Golgotha" in Hebrew and in Latin "Calvary". There he is crucified along with two criminals (John 19:17-22). According to tradition their names were Dismas and Gestas.

Dismas' Feet

Dismas' feet pierced with nails (living ViaCrucis performed on Good Friday)

Jesus agonizes on the cross for six hours. During his last 3 hours on the cross, from noon to 3pm, there is darkness over the whole land.[9] With a loud cry, Jesus gives up his spirit. There is an earthquake, tombs break open, and the curtain in the Temple is torn from top to bottom. The centurion on guard at the site of crucifixion declares, "Truly this was God's Son!" (Matthew 27:45-54) Joseph of Arimathea, a member of the Sanhedrin and secret follower of Jesus, who had not consented to his condemnation, goes to Pilate to request the body of Jesus (Luke 23:50-52). Another secret follower of Jesus and member of the Sanhedrin named Nicodemus brought about a hundred pound weight mixture of spices and helped wrap the body of Christ (John 19:39-40). Pilate asks confirmation from the centurion whether Jesus is dead (Mark 15:44). A soldier pierced the side of Jesus with a lance causing blood and water to flow out (John 19:34), and the centurion informs Pilate that Jesus is dead (Mark 15:45).

Joseph of Arimathea takes the body of Jesus, wraps it in a clean linen shroud, and places it in his own new tomb that had been carved in the rock (Matthew 27:59-60) in a garden near the site of crucifixion. Nicodemus (John 3:1) also came bringing 75 pounds of myrrh and aloes, and places them in the linen with the body of Jesus, according to Jewish burial customs (John 19:39-40). They rolled a large rock over the entrance of the tomb (Matthew 27:60). Then they returned home and rested, because at sunset began Shabbat (Luke 23:54-56). On the third day, Sunday, which is now known as Easter Sunday (or Pascha), Jesus rose from the dead.

In the Catholic Church Edit

The Catholic Church treats Good Friday as a fast day, which in the Latin Rite of the Church is understood as having only one full meal (but smaller than a regular meal - often substituting meat with fish) and two collations (a smaller repast, two of which together do not equal one full meal). In countries where Good Friday is not a day of rest from work, the afternoon liturgical service is usually put off until a few hours after the recommended time of 3 p.m.

The Roman Rite ordinarily has no celebration of Mass after that of the Lord's Supper on Holy Thursday evening until that of the Easter Vigil unless a special exemption is granted for rare solemn or grave occasions by the Vatican or the local bishop, and the only sacraments celebrated are Baptism (for those in danger of death), Penance and Anointing of the Sick.[10] While there is no celebration of the Eucharist, Holy Communion is distributed to the faithful only in the Service of the Passion of the Lord, but can be taken at any hour to the sick who are unable to attend this service.[11]

The altar remains completely bare, without cross, candlesticks or altar cloths.[12] It is customary to empty the holy water fonts in preparation of the blessing of the water at the Easter Vigil.[13] Traditionally, no bells are rung on Good Friday or Holy Saturday until the Easter Vigil.

The Celebration of the Passion of the Lord takes place in the afternoon, ideally at three o'clock, but for pastoral reasons a later hour may be chosen.[14] The vestments used are red.[15] Before 1970, they were black except for the Communion part of the rite, for which violet was used,[16] and before 1955 black was used throughout.[17] If a bishop celebrates, he wears a plain mitre.[18]

The liturgy consists of three parts: the Liturgy of the Word, the Veneration of the Cross, and Holy Communion.

The first part, the Liturgy of the Word, consists of the reading or chanting of Isaiah 52:13-53:12, Hebrews 4:14-16, 5:7-9, and the Passion account from the Gospel of John, which is often divided between more than one singer or reader. This part concludes with a series of prayers: for the Church, the Pope, the clergy and laity of the Church, those preparing for baptism, the unity of Christians, the Jewish people, those who do not believe in Christ, those who do not believe in God, those in public office, those in special need.[19]

The second part of the Good Friday liturgy is the Veneration of the Cross: a crucifix, not necessarily the one that is normally on or near the altar at other times, is solemnly displayed to the congregation and then venerated by them, individually if possible, while special chants are sung.[20]

The third and last part is Holy Communion according to a rite based on that of the final part of Mass, beginning with the Our Father, but omitting the ceremony of "Breaking of the Bread" and its related chant, the "Agnus Dei." The Eucharist, consecrated at the Mass of Holy Thursday is distributed at this service.[21] Before the reform of Pope Pius XII, only the priest received Communion in the framework of what was called the "Mass of the Presanctified", which included the usual Offertory prayers, with the placing of wine in the chalice, but which omitted the Canon of the Mass.[17]

Priest and people then depart in silence, and the altar cloth is removed, leaving the altar bare except for the cross and two or four candlesticks.[22]

In addition to the prescribed liturgical service, the Stations of the Cross are often prayed either in the church or outside, and a prayer service may be held from midday to 3.00 p.m., known as the Three Hours' Agony. In countries such as Malta, Italy, the Philippines, Puerto Rico and Spain, processions with statues representing the Passion of Christ are held.

In Polish churches, a tableau of Christ's Tomb is unveiled in the sanctuary. Many of the faithful spend long hours into the night grieving at the Tomb, where it is customary to kiss the wounds on the Lord's body. A life-size figure of Christ lying in his tomb is widely visited by the faithful, especially on Holy Saturday. The tableaux may include flowers, candles, figures of angels standing watch, and the three crosses atop Mt Calvary, and much more. Each parish strives to come up with the most artistically and religiously evocative arrangement in which the Blessed Sacrament, draped in a filmy veil, is prominently displayed.

Acts of Reparation to Jesus Christ Edit

The Roman Catholic tradition includes specific prayers and devotions as acts of reparation for the sufferings and insults that Jesus suffered during his Passion on Good Friday. These Acts of Reparation to Jesus Christ do not involve a petition for a living or deceased beneficiary, but aim to repair the sins against Jesus. Some such prayers are provided in the Raccolta Catholic prayer book (approved by a Decree of 1854, and published by the Holy See in 1898) which also includes prayers as Acts of Reparation to the Virgin Mary.[23][24][25][26]

In his encyclical Miserentissimus Redemptor on reparations, Pope Pius XI called Acts of Reparation to Jesus Christ a duty for Catholics and referred to them as "some sort of compensation to be rendered for the injury" with respect to the sufferings of Jesus.[27]

Pope John Paul II referred to Acts of Reparation as the "unceasing effort to stand beside the endless crosses on which the Son of God continues to be crucified".[28]

An example: Malta Edit

The Holy Week commemorations reach their peak on Good Friday as the Roman Catholic Church celebrates the passion of Jesus. Solemn celebrations take place in all churches together with processions in different villages around Malta and Gozo. During the celebration, the narrative of the passion is read in some localities. The Adoration of the Cross follows. Good Friday processions take place in Birgu, Bormla, Ghaxaq, Luqa, Mosta, Naxxar, Paola, Qormi, Rabat, Senglea, Valletta, Żebbuġ (Città Rohan) and Żejtun. Processions in Gozo will be in Nadur, Victoria (St. George and Cathedral), Xaghra and Żebbuġ, Gozo.

An example: The Philippines Edit

In the predominantly Roman Catholic Philippines, the day is commemorated with street processions, the Way of the Cross, and a Passion play called the Senakulo. The Church keeps the day solemn by not tolling the church bells, and no Mass will be celebrated. In some communities throughout the country (most notably in the island province of Marinduque or in the San Fernando, Pampanga), the processions include devotees (termed Moriones) who self-flagellate and sometimes even have themselves nailed to crosses as expressions of penance despite health issues and strong disapproval from the Church.[29] After three o'clock in the afternoon of Good Friday (the time at which Jesus is traditionally believed to have died), noise is discouraged, some radio and television stations sign off, businesses close, and the faithful are urged to keep a very solemn and prayerful disposition through to Easter Sunday. Yet other television networks are still on air making way for some religious programming related to the solemn celebration.

In Cebu and other Visayan Islands the locals usually eat binignit and biko as a form of fasting. The elders also discourage taking a bath after 3 o'clock on Good Friday.

Major television networks such as SVD Communication Ministry, and the Dominican Fathers of the Philippines, and others broadcast events at Roman Catholic parishes . These events include the reading of the Seven Last Words, the recitation of the Stations of the Cross, and the service of the Commemoration of the Lord's Passion.

Churches of Byzantine tradition Edit

Byzantine Christians (Eastern Christians who follow the Rite of Constantinople: Eastern Orthodox and Greek-Catholics) call this day "Holy and Great Friday", or simply "Great Friday".

Because of the penitence and sorrow associated with the Crucifixion, the Divine Liturgy is never celebrated on Great Friday, except when this day coincides with the Great Feast of the Annunciation, which falls on the fixed date of March 25 (for those churches which follow the traditional Julian Calendar, March 25 currently falls on April 7 of the modern Gregorian Calendar). Also on Great Friday, the clergy no longer wear the purple or red that is customary throughout Great Lent,[30] but don black vestments instead. There is no "stripping of the altar" on Holy and Great Thursday as in the West; instead, all of the church hangings are changed to black, and will remain so until the Divine Liturgy on Great Saturday.

The faithful revisit the events of the day through public reading of specific Psalms and the Gospels, and singing hymns about Christ's death. Rich visual imagery and symbolism as well as stirring hymnody are remarkable elements of these observances. In the Orthodox understanding, the events of Holy Week are not simply an annual commemoration of past events, but the faithful actually participate in the death and resurrection of Jesus.

Each hour of this day is the new suffering and the new effort of the expiatory suffering of the Savior. And the echo of this suffering is already heard in every word of our worship service - unique and incomparable both in the power of tenderness and feeling and in the depth of the boundless compassion for the suffering of the Savior. The Holy Church opens before the eyes of believers a full picture of the redeeming suffering of the Lord beginning with the bloody sweat in the Garden of Gethsemane up to the crucifixion on Golgotha. Taking us back through the past centuries in thought, the Holy Church brings us to the foot of the cross of Christ erected on Golgotha, and makes us present among the quivering spectators of all the torture of the Savior.[31]

Holy and Great Friday is observed as a strict fast, and adult Byzantine Christians are expected to abstain from all food and drink the entire day to the extent that their health permits. "On this Holy day neither a meal is offered nor do we eat on this day of the crucifixion. If someone is unable or has become very old [or is] unable to fast, he may be given bread and water after sunset. In this way we come to the holy commandment of the Holy Apostles not to eat on Great Friday."[31]

Matins of Holy and Great Friday Edit

The Byzantine Christian observance of Holy and Great Friday, which is formally known as The Order of Holy and Saving Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ, begins on Thursday night with the Matins of the Twelve Passion Gospels. Scattered throughout this Matins service are twelve readings from all four of the Gospels which recount the events of the Passion from the Last Supper through the Crucifixion the burial of Jesus. Some churches have a candelabrum with twelve candles on it, and after each Gospel reading one of the candles is extinguished.

The first of these twelve readings John 13:31-18:1 is the longest Gospel reading of the year, and is a concatenation from all four Gospels. Just before the sixth Gospel reading, which recounts Jesus being nailed to the cross, a large cross is carried out of the sanctuary by the priest, accompanied by incense and candles, and is placed in the center of the nave (where the congregation gathers), with a two-dimensional painted icon of the body of Christ (soma or corpus) affixed to it. As the cross is being carried, the priest or a chanter chants a special antiphon:

Today He who hung the earth upon the waters is hung upon the Cross (three times).
He who is King of the angels is arrayed in a crown of thorns.
He who wraps the heaven in clouds is wrapped in the purple of mockery.
He who in Jordan set Adam free receives blows upon His face.
The Bridegroom of the Church is transfixed with nails.
The Son of the Virgin is pierced with a spear.
We venerate Thy Passion, O Christ (three times).
Show us also Thy glorious Resurrection.[32]

During the service, all come forward to kiss the feet of Christ on the cross. After the Canon, a brief, moving hymn, The Wise Thief is chanted by singers who stand at the foot of the cross in the center of the nave. The service does not end with the First Hour, as usual, but with a special dismissal by the priest:

May Christ our true God, Who for the salvation of the world endured spitting, and scourging, and buffeting, and the Cross, and death, through the intercessions of His most pure Mother, of our holy and God-bearing fathers, and of all the saints, have mercy on us and save us, for He is good and the Lover of mankind.

Royal Hours Edit

The next day, in the forenoon on Friday, all gather again to pray the Royal Hours, a special expanded celebration of the Little Hours (including the First Hour, Third Hour, Sixth Hour, Ninth Hour and Typica) with the addition of scripture readings (Old Testament, Epistle and Gospel) and hymns about the Crucifixion at each of the Hours (some of the material from the previous night is repeated). This service is somewhat more festive in character, and derives its name of "Royal" from both the fact that the Hours are served with more solemnity than normal, commemorating Christ the King who humbled himself for the salvation of mankind, and also from the fact that this service was in the past attended by the Emperor and his court.

Vespers of Holy and Great Friday Edit

In the afternoon, around the 3 p.m. all gather for the Vespers of the Taking-Down from the Cross, commemorating the Deposition from the Cross. The Gospel reading is a concatenation taken from all four of the Gospels. During the service, the body of Christ (the soma) is removed from the cross, as the words in the Gospel reading mention Joseph of Arimathea, wrapped in a linen shroud, and taken to the altar in the sanctuary. Near the end of the service an epitaphios or "winding sheet" (a cloth embroidered with the image of Christ prepared for burial) is carried in procession to a low table in the nave which represents the Tomb of Christ; it is often decorated with an abundance of flowers. The epitaphios itself represents the body of Jesus wrapped in a burial shroud, and is a roughly full-size cloth icon of the body of Christ. Then the priest may deliver a homily and everyone comes forward to venerate the epitaphios. In the Slavic practice, at the end of Vespers, Compline is immediately served, featuring a special Canon of the Crucifixion of our Lord and the Lamentation of the Most Holy Theotokos by Symeon the Logothete.

Matins of Holy and Great Saturday Edit

On Friday night, the Matins of Holy and Great Saturday, a unique service known as the The Lamentation at the Tomb (Epitáphios Thrēnos) is celebrated. This service is also sometimes called Jerusalem Matins. Much of the service takes place around the tomb of Christ in the center of the nave. A unique feature of the service is the chanting of the Lamentations or Praises (Enkōmia), which consist of verses chanted by the clergy interspersed between the verses of Psalm 119 (which is, by far, the longest psalm in the Bible). At the end of the Great Doxology, while the Trisagion is sung, the epitaphios is taken in procession around the outside the church, and is then returned to the tomb. Some churches observe the practice of holding the epitaphios at the door, above waist level, so the faithful most bow down under it as they come back into the church, symbolizing their entering into the death and resurrection of Christ.

The Troparion (hymn of the day) of Good Friday is:

The noble Joseph, when he had taken down Thy most pure Body from the tree, wrapped it in fine linen, and anointed it with spices, and placed it in a new tomb.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, both now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.
The angel came to the myrrh-bearing women at the tomb and said:
Myrrh is fitting for the dead, but Christ has shown Himself a stranger to corruption.

Anglican Communion Edit

The 1662 Book of Common Prayer did not specify a particular rite to be observed on Good Friday but local custom came to mandate an assortment of services, including the Seven Last Words from the Cross and a three-hour service consisting of Matins, Ante-communion (using the Reserved Sacrament in high church parishes) and Evensong. In recent times revised editions of the Prayer Book and Alternative Service Book have re-introduced pre-Reformation forms of observance of Good Friday corresponding to those in today's Roman Catholic Church, with special nods to the rites that had been observed in the Church of England prior to the Henrican, Edwardian and Elizabethan reforms, including Creeping to the Cross.

Other Protestant traditions Edit

Many Protestant communities hold special services on this day as well. In the German Lutheran tradition from the 16th to the 20th century, this was the most important holiday, and abstention from all worldly works was expected. Lutheranism had no restrictions on the celebration of Holy Communion on Good Friday; on the contrary, it was a prime day on which to receive Holy Communion, and services were often accentuated by special music such as the St. Matthew Passion by Lutheran Johann Sebastian Bach. Mid-20th century Lutheran liturgical practice moved away from Holy Communion celebrated on Good Friday, and among the major North American Lutheran bodies today, Holy Communion may not be celebrated on Good Friday, but rather on Maundy Thursday. However, the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod in its official service book, Lutheran Service Book, does permit the offering of the Eucharist also on Good Friday. Moravians hold a Lovefeast on Good Friday as they receive Holy Communion on Maundy Thursday. The Methodist Church also commemorates Good Friday with a service of worship, often based on the Seven Last Words from the Cross.[33][34]

Some Baptist,[35] Pentecostal, many Sabbatarian[36] and non-denominational churches oppose the observance of Good Friday, instead observing the Crucifixion on Wednesday to coincide with the Jewish sacrifice of the Passover Lamb (which Christians believe is an Old Testament pointer to Jesus Christ). A Wednesday Crucifixion of Jesus Christ allows for Christ to be in the tomb ("heart of the earth") for three days and three nights as he told the Pharisees he would be (Matthew 12:40), rather than two nights and a day if he had died on a Friday.[37][38]

Associated customs Edit

In many countries with a strong Christian tradition such as Bermuda, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Peru, the Philippines, Mexico, Venezuela, the countries of the Caribbean, Germany, Malta, Australia, Singapore, New Zealand,[39][40][41] and the United Kingdom, the day is observed as a public or federal holiday.

In many English-speaking countries, most shops are closed for the day and advertising from television and radio broadcasts is withdrawn to some degree.

In Canada, banks and government offices (at all levels) and public sector businesses are closed, along with most private sector businesses, except in Quebec where government offices and schools are closed but the majority of private-sector businesses (except banks) remain open.

In Hong Kong, all businesses and government offices are closed for a public holiday.

In the [United States (which is predominantly a Protestant nation and therefore does not observe Good Friday as strictly as a traditionally Catholic country) Good Friday is not a government holiday at the federal level; individual states and municipalities may observe the holiday. Private businesses and certain other institutions may close or not for Good Friday, according to their preferences. The stock market is closed on Good Friday. However, the vast majority of businesses are open on Good Friday. Some public schools may incidentally be closed on Good Friday because of the proximity of secular "spring break" holidays. The postal service operates, and banks regulated by the federal government do not close for Good Friday.

Ireland, a predominantly Catholic country, prohibits all alcohol from being sold on Good Friday. Banks and public institutions are closed on this day but it is not an official bank holiday (i.e. public holiday), so many offices and other workplaces remain open. All pubs and many restaurants in Ireland close for the day – it is similar to Christmas Day in this regard. This tradition has come under criticism of late, with secular businesses claiming a loss in earnings by way of a religious festival.

In Germany, comedic theater performances and events which include public dancing are illegal on the day (although this restriction is enforced unevenly); cinemas and television are not affected, although many TV channels show religious material on the day. The enforcement of these rules even on non-Christians has met with increased opposition in the last decade.

In South Africa, the government regulates the opening of businesses and entertainment outlets on this day (as with Christmas Day). All government offices, schools and certain businesses are closed on Good Friday by law. The buying and selling of alcohol is prohibited.

In India, Good Friday is a Central Government as well as a State holiday, although Stock Markets are usually closed. Some other businesses are also closed in states where Christians are in the majority like Assam, Goa, and Kerala (higher percentage of Christians, even though not the majority) but the majority of businesses are open on Good Friday in rest of the country. Most schools are closed on Good Friday.

In Muslim-majority Indonesia, Good Friday is a national holiday. All government offices, schools and certain businesses are closed on Good Friday by law and many newspapers choose not to publish on this day. The public holiday is also observed in Singapore and in the Malaysian states of Sabah and Sarawak.

Eastern Orthodox Christians are not supposed to eat at all on this day and the next, while the Roman Catholic Church observes fasting and abstinence for this day as well as Ash Wednesday.

In many English-speaking countries, hot cross buns are eaten.

In Bermuda, kites are flown. They are often handmade with wooden sticks, colorful tissue paper, glue, and string. The shape of the kite and the use of wood is meant to symbolize the cross that Jesus died on. Also, the kite flying in the sky symbolizes his ascension to heaven.

Traditionally, Roman Catholics are to abstain from eating meat every Friday of the year as penance. Nowadays, this is only a requirement during Fridays of Lent; during Fridays of the rest of the year, other methods of penance may be followed, for example an extra prayer or abstaining from something other than food. Many Roman Catholics (and members of the Protestant denominations as well) will eat fish and vegetables on Good Friday.

There is no horse racing on Good Friday in the UK. However, in 2008, betting shops opened for the first time on this day. The BBC has for many years introduced its 7 am News broadcast on Radio 4 on Good Friday with a verse from Isaac Watts' hymn "When I Survey the Wonderous Cross".

Calculating the date Edit

Good Friday is the Friday before Easter, which is calculated differently in Eastern Christianity and Western Christianity. Easter falls on the first Sunday following the Paschal Full Moon, the full moon on or after 21 March, taken to be the date of the vernal equinox. The Western calculation uses the Gregorian calendar, while the Eastern calculation uses the Julian calendar, whose 21 March now corresponds to the Gregorian calendar's 3 April. The calculations for identifying the date of the full moon also differ.

In Eastern Christianity, Easter can fall between March 22 and April 25 in the Julian calendar (thus between April 4 and May 8 in terms of the Gregorian calendar, during the period 1900 and 2099), so Good Friday can fall between March 20 and April 23, inclusive (or between April 2 and May 6 in terms of the Gregorian calendar). (See Easter.)

See also Edit

Related days Edit

Notes Edit

  1. Isaac Newton, 1733, Of the Times of the Birth and Passion of Christ, in "Observations upon the Prophecies of Daniel and the Apocalypse of St. John" (London: J. Darby and T. Browne).
  2. Bradley Schaefer, 1990, Lunar Visibility and the Crucifixion Quarterly. Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society 31.
  3. Astronomers on the Date of the Crucifixion
  4. Astronomers on Date of Christ's Death
  5. John Pratt Newton's Date For The Crucifixion "Quarterly Journal of Royal Astronomical Society", September 1991.
  6. Newton's Date For The Crucifixion
  7. Humphreys, Colin J., and W. G. Waddington, "Dating the Crucifixion," Nature 306 (December 22/29, 1983), pp. 743-46. [1]
  8. Colin J. Humphreys and W. G. Waddington, The Date of the Crucifixion Journal of the American Scientific Affiliation 37 (March 1985)[2]
  9. Matthew 27:45; Mark 15:13; Luke 23:44
  10. Roman Missal: Good Friday, 1.
  11. Roman Missal: Good Friday, 2.
  12. Roman Missal, Good Friday, 3.
  13. Letter of the Congregation for Divine Worship, 14 March 2003.
  14. Roman Missal: Good Friday, 4.
  15. Roman Missal: Good Friday, 5.
  16. 1962 edition of the Roman Missal.
  17. 17.0 17.1 1920 typical edition of the Roman Missal.
  18. Caeremoniale Episcoporum, 315.
  19. Roman Missal: Good Friday, 7-13.
  20. Roman Missal: Good Friday, 14-21.
  21. Roman Missal: Good Friday, 22-31.
  22. Roman Missal: Good Friday, 32-33.
  23. NEW ADVENT
  24. NEW ADVENT
  25. Joseph P. Christopher et al., 2003 The Raccolta St Athanasius Press ISBN 978-0970652669.
  26. Ann Ball, 2003 Encyclopedia of Catholic Devotions and Practices ISBN 087973910X.
  27. Miserentissimus Redemptor Encyclical of Pope Pius XI [3].
  28. Vatican archives.
  29. "Dozens ignore warnings to re-enact crucifixion". The Independent. 2008-03-22. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/australasia/dozens-ignore-warnings-to-reenact-crucifixion-799322.html. Retrieved 2008-03-23. 
  30. There is a wide variety of uses regarding the colors worn during Great Lent and Holy Week in the Rite of Constantinople.
  31. 31.0 31.1 Bulgakov, Sergei V. (1900), "Great Friday" (PDF), Handbook for Church Servers, 2nd ed., Kharkov: Tr. Archpriest Eugene D. Tarris, p. 543, http://www.transfigcathedral.org/faith/Bulgakov/0543.pdf, retrieved 2007-10-25. 
  32. Archimandrite Kallistos (Ware) and Mother Mary (2002), "Service of the Twelve Gospels", The Lenten Triodion, South Cannan, PA: St. Tikhon's Seminary Press, p. 587 .
  33. "Christians mark Good Friday". The Daily Reflector. http://www.reflector.com/local/content/news/stories/2008/03/21/GoodFriday.html. Retrieved 2007-03-21. 
  34. "Good Friday". United Methodist Church. http://archives.umc.org/interior.asp?mid=258&GID=179&GMOD=VWD&GCAT=G. Retrieved 2007-03-21. 
  35. Proof for a Wednesday Crucifixion
  36. The Resurrection Was Not on Sunday http://www.thetrumpet.com/index.php?q=4758.3049.102.0
  37. The Berean Call
  38. FACTnet: Cult, Cults, Abuse by Religions, Abuse Recovery Discussion & Resources, Peer-Support, Legal support
  39. Holidays Act 2003 (New Zealand), Section 17 Days that are public holidays
  40. Shop Trading Hours Act Repeal Act 1990 (New Zealand), Section 3 Shops to be closed on Anzac Day morning, Good Friday, Easter Sunday, and Christmas Day
  41. Broadcasting Act 1989 (New Zealand), Section 79A Hours during which election programmes prohibited, Section 81 Advertising hours

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