Friday, April 6, 2007
Today is Good Friday, the second day of the Easter Triduum. The Easter Triduum is the three holy days where Catholics (and other Christians) celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Just to show how important these days are here is a quote from Vatican II Council: "Christ redeemed us all and gave perfect glory to God principally through his paschal mystery: dying he destroyed our death and rising he restored our life. Therefore the Easter Triduum of the passion and resurrection of Christ is the culmination of the entire liturgical year."
Today is the second day, Good Friday. So if Christ was crucified on Good Friday, why is it called "good"? On wikipedia they say it is a peculiarity of the English language. Like how "Good bye" came from "God be with you," Good Friday started out as God's friday. Either way, today is a very important day for most Christians around the world. There are some different practices, but since I really only know about Catholicism, I will just mention thei practices here. 3pm is the time traditionally marked as when Christ died. Mass is held at that time, but there is no procession or consecration of the Host and Wine at this Mass. Consecration was done on Holy Thursday. The bells are not rung and there is a more solemn feel of this Mass. Usually before Mass they will have the Stations of the Cross (if I could link this I would give you a link--but you could look this up on wikipedia or something if your interested) where the Passion of Jesus is reflected upon by prayers and stuff. Again, after Mass, people leave in silence instead of the usual procession and singing. Good Friday is a day of fast for Catholics. They are asked to attend the Mass services and/or stay at home with family. Usually Catholics will abstain from things like the t.v and radio to keep the solemnity of this occasion and to better reflect on what has happened on this day. This observance continues until the Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday. It is on this day that Christians remember that God has died so that we might live!
Fasting is different in the Catholic church. The fast requirement is that you are allowed one "large" meal which is smaller than your regular meals. You are also allowed two smaller meals that when combined are smaller than the "large" meal.
I hope that today we can reflect on Christ's sacrifice for us, maybe read the scriptures and pray. How marvelous this season truly is, we are waiting in anticipation for the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ!
God bless you guys today!