The holiday is observed in many countries around the world and in different Christian denominations. In that time people often read Biblical accounts of what happened before Jesus’s death – his arrest, interrogation in the house of Annas, the trial in front of the Sanhedrin and later Pontius Pilate, and in the end his six-hour agony accompanied by miraculous events. Good Friday is also a great occasion to think of what Jesus has done for all of those who believe in him. According to Christians, the greatest manifestation of love and sacrifice given by Christ deserves to be commemorated with respect and prayer.
Although Good Friday is not a federal holiday in the United States, it is a state holiday in twelve states. This means that in these areas it is usually a day off with most schools and businesses closed. Different Churches have different ways of celebrating the day, so many Christians attend such special services or prayer vigils. Some families try to keep a calm and quiet atmosphere, light candles or fast. Some important symbols apparent that day are: the crucifix or cross, a black cloth covering the cross and paintings or statues reminding of this extremely important Christian event. It is also common to bake and eat ‘Hot cross buns’ on Good Friday.
Did you know?
As it is commonly believed that Christ died around 3 pm, in many Catholic Churches this hour is the beginning of the Three Hour Service. In other churches a similar service starts at noon and ends at 3 pm. It aims at commemorating the last three hours of Jesus’s life as a human.
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