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Goa Tours India » Festivals of Goa » Christian's Festival » Easter/Good Friday
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Easter/Good Friday

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Good Friday Celebrations Initially called as 'God's Friday', the present aspect is believed to have emerged in the 10th or 11th century On Good Friday, a cross, stands for the one on which Jesus was crucified, is revealed in many churches. It is believed that Jesus rose from his grave on the following Sunday, which is celebrated as Easter. The rituals for Good Friday start on the leading Thursday. A feast representing the last supper of Christ is held on Thursday night. The end of this meal displays the beginning of the fast for Easter. Good Friday is a day of sincere respect and awe among Goan Catholics.

When does it fall?
Good Friday is a special day celebrated by the Christians. It falls towards the end of the Holy Week and marks Jesus's resurrection. Good Friday occurs between the March 20th and April 23rd for the decade (2001 to 2010). The most popular church of Panaji, the church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception, is elegantly decorated and thousands of people gather there to pay tributes and take part in the events going on in the church.

Origination of The Festivity
Earlier, only Easter Sunday was celebrated as a holy day by the Christian Church. By the fourth century, each day of the week preceding Easter were established as holy days including Good Friday. It is believed that "Good" represents the good gift of salvation brought forth by martyrdom. From the earliest times the Christians kept every Friday as a feast day. In the Eastern orthodox Churches, it is known as the "Great Friday".

Celebrations Held
Innumerable Goan Catholics flock in the Panjim Church of 'Mary Immaculate Conception' to listen to mass and participate in the Way of the Cross. During the afternoon sermon, the priests recount the agonies that Jesus Christ took upon himself for the sake of humanness. The sermons in konkani language attract a large crowd standing on the threshold are attired in formal clothes. After the mass, the rood is uncovered before the crowd for reverence. Panjim attracts the largest crowd in Goa. A large wooden cross carrying an image of Jesus is taken from the church and moved through the streets of the town. It is acquitted by the clergymen, while the crowd abides by two parallel lines in front of and at back of the statue, some weeping and all with very sedate faces.

The ones who do not participate are free to have a look of the procession from the roadside. Sober music played by a band accompanies the procession, which slowly turns its way through the main streets in Panjim before returning back to the church. The flock and procession occur in every church in Goa, but the one in Panjim draws the biggest crowd. Hence, Good Friday is observed as a day of sorrow, grieving and fasting.

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