It is the special time of the year when people all over the world prepare and celebrate Pascha (Easter). This year Orthodox people celebrate Pascha on Sunday May 1, 2016. There are a lot of traditions associated with this Feast of Feasts and I would like to dedicate this post and the following four posts to the traditions associated with it. This post is going to focus on Good Friday.
First of all, what is Good Friday? Good Friday is the day when Christians commemorate the day on which our Lord, God and Saviour Jesus Christ was crucified. The question may arise, if this is such a day, why do people call it “Good”.
To answer this question I decided to go ad fontes (i.e. to the sources) and asked an Orthodox priest. The reason for this is that the Church believes that this is the way in which God made our salvation, on the Cross.
Good Friday is also referred to as “Holy Friday” (pointing at the importance of the Feast) and Easter Friday (pointing at the closeness of Pascha). In French, the Feast is referred to as “Le Vendredi saint” (Holy Friday). In Ukrainian, the Feast is referred to as “Велика п’ятниця” (Great Friday), “Страсна п’ятниця” (Passionate Friday – the word ‘passion’ in this case is used in the meaning of “suffering” pointing at the pain that Jesus Christ endured for people), “Свята п’ятниця” (Holy Friday).
Wishing all imminent Paschal joy!