Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Traditional Good Friday

The celebration of Good Friday is ancient, and some of the practices associated with Good Friday are attested to by Egeria in the 4th century. The day gradually became a time of penance and fasting as the anniversary of the death of Christ. The name "Good Friday" possibly comes from "God's Friday," although the exact reason for the current name is unclear. The custom of venerating the cross on Good Friday probably originated in Jerusalem in the 7th or 8th century, and continues to this day in many Western Churches. Pre-sanctified Masses are referenced in the documents of the Quinisext Council, which was held in AD 692, which means the practice pre-dates the seventh century. The Council mentions pre-sanctified liturgies as occurring primarily during Lent. Various churches observe Good Friday in addition to Catholics and Eastern Christians. Anglicans, Methodists, and Lutherans all observe Good Friday to varying degrees.

Local churchgoers on a traditional Good Friday procession from St John’s Wood to Marylebone in North London

(Johnny Green/PA)

The Reverend Canon John Manchester lights a candle for Claudia Lawrence inside St Mary’s Priory Church, Old Malton, North Yorkshire. Peter Lawrence, the father of Claudia, the university chef who went missing in York last month, issued a fresh appeal today for help in finding his daughter. "Easter is a time of hope," he said

(Anna Gowthorpe/PA)

Worshippers celebrate Easter by taking part in the Christ the Saviour Brotherhood procession on the beach in Valencia, Spain

(Diego Tuson/AFP/Getty)

Actors perform the Stations of the Cross during the Good Friday procession in Bensheim, western Germany. Thousands lined the roads of the village to attend the Passion Play

(Thomas Lohnes/AFP/Getty)

An actor dressed as Jesus Christ carries a cross through the streets of Sydney, Australia

(Rob Griffith/AP)

John Michael, an Australian, is nailed to a cross in Kapitangan, near Manila in the Philippines. The Church frowns on the practice and every year the health department warns that anyone planning to be crucified should ensure that the nails are sterilised beforehand. The Easter rituals have become a tourist attraction

(ay Directo/AFP/Getty)

Villagers re-enact the Crucifixion in Cutud, north of Manila

(Pat Roque/AP)

An Indian Christian carries a crucifix through Mumbai on Good Friday. Hundreds of his fellow devotees participated in a street procession portraying the suffering meted out by Roman soldiers to Jesus Christ on his way to the Crucifixion

(al Pillai/AFP/Getty)

A Christian boy carries a crucifix as he takes part in a silent Good Friday procession in Calcutta

(Pipal Adhikary/EPA)

A man carries a bundle of cacti on his shoulders during a procession of penitents in Taxco, Mexico

(Gregory Bull/AP)

A young boy dressed as an angel for Holy Week in Taxco

(Gregory Bull/AP)

Brilly Liangco, 39, a Filipino, is nailed to a wooden cross in San Fernando, in Pampanga province, northern Philippines. More than a dozen people were nailed to crosses in Pampanga on Good Friday

(Rolex Dela Pene/EPA)

Pilgrims cross Beal Sands on the annual Northern Cross Pilgrimage to Holy Island near Berwick-upon-Tweed. More than 60 pilgrims walk 100 miles through Northumberland and the Scottish Borders

(James Glossop/The Times)

Andre Vingt-Trois, the Archbishop of Paris, kneels during the traditional Roman Catholic Easter procession at the Sacre Coeur basilica in Montmartre


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