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Monday, April 25, 2011

Good Friday

Good Friday, Friday immediately preceding Easter, celebrated by Christians as the anniversary of Christ’s crucifixion. The name “Good Friday” is generally believed to be a corruption of “God’s Friday”. Since the time of the early Church, the day has been dedicated to penance, fasting, and prayer.

In the Roman Catholic Church, the Good Friday liturgy is composed of three distinct parts: readings and prayers, including the reading of the Passion according to St John; the veneration of the cross; and a general communion service (formerly called the Mass of the Pre-sanctified), involving the reception of pre-consecrated hosts by the priest and faithful.

From the 16th century onward, the Good Friday service took place in the morning; in 1955 Pope Pius XII decreed that it be held in the afternoon or evening. As a result, such traditional afternoon devotions as the Tre Ore (Italian, “three hours”), consisting of sermons, meditations, and prayers centering on the three-hour agony of Christ on the cross, were almost entirely discontinued in the Roman Catholic Church.

Good Friday is a legal holiday in many Christian countries.

*Penemuruai`s comment: Belated Good Friday

 

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