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Orthodox Christians celebrate Holy Friday

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  • Nina Tkachuk Dimas
      http://english.ruvr.ru/2013_05_03/Orthodox-Christians-celebrate-Holy-Friday/ Today, 11:27 0 Orthodox Christians celebrate Holy Friday Photo: RIA Novosti
    Message 1 of 1 , May 3 8:22 AM
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      http://english.ruvr.ru/2013_05_03/Orthodox-Christians-celebrate-Holy-Friday/

      Today,
      11:27 0
      Orthodox Christians celebrate Holy Friday

      Photo: RIA Novosti
      Orthodox Christians are observing Holy Friday, the most sorrowful date of the
      Christian calendar commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus Christ.

      On this day,
      Orthodox believers observe a particularly rigorous period of fasting in
      commemoration of Jesus’ sufferings and his death on the cross. They abstain from
      every kind of food subsisting on bread and water.
       
      Patriarch Kirill of
      Moscow and All Russia will lead Great Vespers with the rank of removal of the
      shroud and matins with the rank of burials at the Cathedral of Christ the Savior
      in Moscow.
      Ceremonies to
      worship the shroud of Christ will go on until late Saturday evening. The shroud
      will be put back in its place inside the altar several minutes before the start
      of the Easter procession of the cross.
       
      This year, Orthodox
      Easter is celebrated on May 5th.
       
      Russia’s Patriarch to hold divine services on Holy
      Friday
       
      The head of the
      Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, will hold divine services - vespers
      and matins - in downtown Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral on Holy Friday,
      the Moscow Patriarchate reported on its website.
       
      Great and Holy
      Friday, known as Good Friday to Western Christians, is considered the most
      sorrowful day of Holy Week and of the liturgical year because Christians
      remember Jesus being crucified and accepting his death on the cross.
       
      There is no liturgy
      in Christian churches on Holy Friday. In Orthodox Christianity, an icon or
      embroidery of the Shroud is taken out of the chancel in the afternoon and placed
      in the middle of the church, with believers remembering the Passion of Christ;
      the Shroud remains there until the beginning of Sunday's Easter liturgy.
       
      Holy Friday is
      preceded by another significant day of Holy Week (the week before Easter), Holy
      Thursday. On that day, known as Clean Thursday in Russia and Maundy Thursday in
      England, the Church remembers the Last Supper of Jesus and the Apostles. On that
      day, bishops wash the feet of priests in commemoration of Christ washing the
      feet of his 12 disciples as a sign of humility.
      A Russian
      delegation will on Friday head for Jerusalem to get Holy Fire and deliver it to
      Moscow for the Easter service in the Christ the Savior Cathedral.
       
      The Holy Fire that
      is lit every year at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem on the day
      preceding Orthodox Easter is believed by Orthodox Christians to be a
      miracle.
       
      From Moscow the
      Holy Fire, which pilgrims say does not burn in the first minutes after it has
      been lit, is "distributed" among churches in containers similar to those used to
      transport the Olympic flame.
      This year, Russia
      will celebrate Easter, also known in Orthodox Christianity as Pascha, on May 5
      in line with the Julian calendar. Easter is Christianity's most important and
      joyful feast when the Church commemorates the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
       
      Russia’s Patriarch conducts Maundy Thursday
      service
       
      The Patriarch of
      Moscow and All Russia Kirill has conducted the Maundy Thursday service in
      Moscow’s major Cathedral of Christ the Savior.
       
      Maundy Thursday is
      the day of remembrance of the Last Supper, at which the Savior washed the feet
      of his disciples, thus showing an example of brotherly love and humility.
       
      Orthodox Christians
      spend this day in Easter preparations. On Maundy Thursday, believers are to get
      up before dawn, wash themselves and clean the house.
       
      On this day
      Orthodox Christians also dye eggs and bake Easter cakes to prepare for the May 5
      celebrations.
      Voice of
      Russia, RIA, Ekho Moskvy

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