Jerusalem Readies itself for Easter

Good Friday procession in Jerusalem; photo courtesy Travelujah

Good Friday procession in Jerusalem; photo courtesy Travelujah

28/3/2012

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Christians visiting the Holy Land in the spring sometimes fail to appreciate the link between Passover and Easter: Jesus came to Jerusalem in April circa 34, making his triumphal entry on the Sunday of the last fateful week of his life, in order to offer a Passover sacrifice at Herod’s magnificent newly-built Temple. He celebrated the Passover seder banquet that Thursday night, an event commonly referred to as the Last Supper. Returning with his apostles to their encampment at Gethsemane on the nearby Mount of Olives, he was arrested that evening after being betrayed by Judas.

On Friday, the holy day of Passover, he was tried and then crucified. His corpse was hurriedly placed in a new sepulcher or family tomb belonging to Joseph of Arimathea near to the Skull Hill execution grounds so as not to violate the Sabbath that began Friday shortly before sundown. Sunday morning it was discovered that the rolling stone sealing Jesus’ tomb had been shifted, and the sepulcher was empty. Jesus had arisen.

Thus Passover and Easter began on the same date. But Christianity the daughter religion of Judaism, was anxious to disassociate itself from its sources, and so established a new formula to calculate Easter that was independent of Passover. Judaism celebrates the holiday (called Pesach in Hebrew) on the full moon of the seventh month of Nisan in commemoration of the Hebrews’ exodus from slavery in Egypt. Passover lasts seven days in Israel and among Reform Jews, and eight days elsewhere around the world. It begins on Nisan 15 and ends on Nisan 21 in Israel (and for Reform Jews), and on Nisan 22 elsewhere.

Since Hebrew days begin and end at sundown, Passover begins at sundown on the preceding day. Thus this year Jews across the world celebrate the seder on Friday, April 6 after sunset.

In rejecting the Jewish lunar liturgical calendar as the basis for Easter and other Christian moveable feasts, the Church fathers still relied on astronomical occurrences. In the Western Church, including both Roman Catholic and Protestant denominations, Easter is calculated as the first Sunday after the paschal full moon that occurs on or after the vernal equinox. If the full moon falls on a Sunday, then Easter is the following Sunday. The holiday can occur anywhere between March 22 and April 25, and this year falls on Sunday, April 8.

The Western church does not however use the astronomically correct date for the vernal equinox but the arbitrarily fixed date of March 21. And by full moon it does not mean the astronomical full moon but the “ecclesiastical moon,” which is based on tables created by the church. These constructs allow the date of Easter to be calculated in advance rather than determined by actual astronomical observances, which are naturally less predictable.

While the Eastern or Orthodox Churches use the same formula to calculate Easter, they base the date on a slightly different calendar-the Julian calendar rather than the revised Gregorian calendar that was adopted by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582 to correct for slippage in the seasons caused by the failure to adjust the calendar by an extra day every fourth leap year. Consequently, both the Western and Eastern churches only occasionally celebrate Easter on the same day. This year the Orthodox church celebrates Easter on Sunday, April 15 – one week after Roman Catholics and Protestants.

Unlike the Western Church, the Eastern Church sets the date of Easter according to the astronomical full moon and the actual equinox as observed along the meridian of Jerusalem, site of the crucifixion and resurrection.

To make it easy for tourists and locals alike to participate in Easter celebrations, Travelujah has complied a full listing of all the Latin and Orthodox Easter services in Jerusalem.

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Roman Catholic and Protestant Easter Services 2012

ARMENIAN CATHOLIC PATRIARCHAL EXARCHATE
Via Dolorosa, III Station, Tel: 02-628 4262
Armenian rite. Services will be in Armenian

Palm Sunday, April 1
10.00 Blessing of Palms and Holy Mass

Holy Thursday, April 5
16.00 Holy Mass and Washing of the Feet
20.00-1.00 Vespers and Vigil
Good Friday, April 6
10.00 Way of the Cross
16.00 Vespers of Christ
Holy Saturday, April 7
16.00 Easter Vigil and Holy Mass
Easter Sunday, April 8
10.00 Solemn High Mass
AUSTRIAN HOSPICE
37 Via Dolorosa, Tel: 02-626 5800
Services will be in German

Palm Sunday, April 1
10.30 Heilige Messe
Holy Thursday, April 5
19.30 Gründonnerstagsliturgie
Good Friday, April 6
14.00 Karfreitagsliturgie
Holy Saturday, April 7
21.00 Osternachtfeier

Easter Sunday, April 8
10.30 Heilige Messe
GETHSEMANE CHURCH – Basilica of the Agony
Mount of Olives, Tel: 02-626 6444
Services will be in Spanish

Holy Thursday, April 5
17.00 Holy Mass and Washing of the Feet
Good Friday, April 6
17.00 Liturgy of the Passion of our Lord
Holy Saturday, April 7
20.30 Easter Vigil and Holy Mass
DORMITION ABBEY
Mount Zion, Tel: 02-565 5330
Services will be in German.
Palm Sunday, April 1
9.00 Blessing of the Palms and Holy Mass
Holy Thursday, April 5
19.30 Holy Mass and Washing of the Feet
21.00 Adoration in the Crypt

Good Friday, April 6
15.00 Liturgy of the Passion of our Lord
Easter Sunday, April 8
3.00 Easter Holy Mass
11.00 Solemn High Mass
Easter Monday, April 9
8.00 Holy Mass
ECCE HOMO CONVENT
41 Via Dolorosa , Tel: 02-627 7292
Soeurs de Notre Dame de Sion (NDS), Chemin Neuf Community
Services will be in French and English
Palm Sunday, April 1
11.30 Mass Eleonora Garden – Mount of Olives

Holy Thursday, April 5
5.00 Holy Mass of the Lord\’s Supper (English)
Good Friday, April 6
15.00 Good Friday Liturgy on the Lithostrotos (English)
18.00 Good Friday Liturgy on the Lithostrotos (French)
Holy Saturday, April 7
21.00 Easter Vigil in Ecce Homo Basilica (English only)
Easter Sunday, April 8
7.00 Holy Mass on the Terrace (French and English)
GREEK CATHOLIC PATRIARCHATE (MELKITE)
Greek-Catholic Patriarchate Road, Tel: 02-628 2023
Byzantine rite. Services will be in Arabic, but texts will be available in English, German and French.

Palm Sunday, April 1
10.00 Divine Liturgy and Procession
Monday and Tuesday, April 2-3
17.00 Matines Service (Bridley Prayer)
Wednesday, April 4
10.30 Liturgy of the presanctified gifts
17.00 Matines Service (Bridley Prayer)
Holy Thursday, April 5
10.00 Blessing of the Holy Oil
10.30 Vespers and Liturgy of St. Basil
17.00 Passion Service
Good Friday, April 6
10.30 None (Veneration of the Cross), Vespers and Descent of the Cross
17.00 Burial Service and Procession
Holy Saturday, April 7
10.30 Blessing of the Holy Fire, Vespers and Liturgy of St. Basil
Easter Sunday, April 8
6.00 Easter Service and Liturgy
10.00 Solemn Easter Liturgy
Easter Monday, April 9
9.00 Divine Liturgy, Procession and Reading of the Resurrection Gospel (multi-lingual)
HOUSE OF Sts. SIMEON AND ANNA
10 HaRav Kook St., Tel. 02-624 8255
Services will be in Hebrew.

Holy Thursday, April 5
19.00 Holy Mass of the Lord\’s Supper
Good Friday, April 6
15.00 Veneration of the Cross

Holy Saturday, April 7
21.00 Easter Vigil and Holy Mass

PONTIFICAL INSTITUTE – NOTRE DAME OF JERUSALEM CENTER
Paratroopers Road opposite New Gate, Tel: 02-627 9111
Services will be in English and some multilingual parts.
Palm Sunday, April 1
9.00 Blessing of the Palms, Procession and Holy Mass
18.30 Holy Mass
Holy Thursday, April 5
17.00 Solemn Holy Mass and Washing of the Feet
Good Friday, April 6
15.00 Liturgy of the Passion of our Lord
Holy Saturday, April 7
22.30 Easter Vigil and Solemn High Mass

Easter Sunday April 8
10.00 Solemn High Mass
18.30 Holy Mass
Easter Monday, April 9
18.30 Holy Mass
MARONITE PATRIARCHAL EXARCHATE – Mar Maroon House
25 Maronite Convent Street, Tel: 02-628 2158
Maronite rite. Services will be in Arabic and Syriac.

Palm Sunday, April 1
10.00 Blessing of the Palms and Holy Mass
Holy Thursday, April 5
17.00 Holy Mass and Washing of the Feet
Good Friday, April 6
17.00 Veneration of the Cross
Easter Sunday, April 8
10.00 Easter Mass and Liturgy

ST. ANNE\’S BASILICA
St. Stephen\’s Gate, Tel: 02-628 3285, 628 1992
Services will be in French.
Palm Sunday, April 1
7.00 Holy Mass
Holy Saturday, April 7
20.30 Easter Vigil
Easter Sunday, April 8
8.00 Easter Mass
NATIVITY OF ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST CHURCH
Ain Karem, Tel: 02-632 3000
Services will be in Italian.

Palm Sunday, April 1
8.00 Blessing of Palms, followed by Holy Mass
Holy Thursday, April 5
17.30 Evening Holy Mass of the Lord’s Supper
Good Friday, April 6
15.30 Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion
Holy Saturday, April 7
20.00 Easter Vigil
Easter Sunday, April 8
8.00 Holy Mass of the Lord’s Resurrection
Easter Monday, April 9
8.00 Holy Mass for Monday in Octave of Easter
ST. PETER IN GALLICANTU
Mount Zion, Tel: 02-673 1739, 673 4812
Services will be in French and English.
Holy Thursday, April 21
18.00 Holy Mass of the Lord’s Supper

ST. SAVIOR\’S LATIN PARISH CHURCH
1 St. Francis St, Tel: 02-626 6605
Services will be in Arabic and Latin.

Palm Sunday, April 1
9.00 Procession and Holy Mass (A)
Holy Thursday, April 5
17.30 Holy Mass “In Cena Domini” (L and A)
Good Friday, April 6
16.00 Celebration of the Lord\’s Passion (A)
Holy Saturday, April 7
19.00 Easter Vigil (A)

Easter Sunday April 8
Holy Masses (A) at 9.00, 11.00, 13.00

ST. STEPHEN\’S BASILICA
6 Nablus Road, Tel: 02-626 4468
Services will be in French.
Palm Sunday, April 1
10.30 Holy Mass and Blessing of the Palms
Holy Thursday, April 5
17.00 Liturgy of the Lord’s Supper
Good Friday, April 6
17.00 Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion
Holy Saturday, April 7
21.00 Easter Vigil and Holy Mass
Easter Sunday, April 8
7.30 Holy Mass
11.30 Solemn High Mass
SYRIAN-CATHOLIC PATRIARCHAL EXARCHATE
6 Chaldean St, Tel: 02-628 2657 / 274 2497
Syrian rite. Services will be in Arabic and Syriac.
Palm Sunday, April 1
8.30 Palm Procession in Bethlehem
10.30 Palm Procession in Jerusalem
19.00 Light Procession (The 10 Virgins) Jerusalem

Holy Thursday, April 5
17.00 pm Holy Eucharist and Washing of the Feet in Bethlehem
Good Friday, April 6
14.30-17.00 Penitential Ceremony
17.00 Adoration of the Cross in Jerusalem
Holy Saturday, April 7
17.00 Holy Eucharist in Bethlehem and in Jerusalem
Easter Sunday, April 8
8.30 Holy Liturgy in Bethlehem
10.30 Holy Liturgy in Jerusalem
Easter Monday, April 9
10.00 Holy Mass at the Holy Sepulcher
BAPTIST CHURCH
Narkiss Street at Trumpeldor, Tel: 0508 193 060
Services will be in English
.
Easter Breakfast and Service, Sunday, April 8
Breakfast 9.00
Worship Service 10:45
ABU GHOSH – CRUSADER CHURCH
Abbaye Bénédictine Ste Marie de la Résurrection
Tel: 02-534 2798
Services will be in French and Latin.

Palm Sunday, April 1
10.30 Holy Mass and Blessing of the Palms
Holy Thursday, April 5
17.00 Holy Mass of the Lord’s Supper
Good Friday, April 6
15.00 Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion
Holy Saturday, April 7
22.00 Easter Vigil and Holy Mass
Easter Sunday, April 8
10.30 Solemn High Mass
18.00 Vespers
LATRUN – TRAPPIST ABBEY
Rte. 3, Tel: 08-925 5180, 922 0065,
Services will be in French.
Palm Sunday, April 1
11.00 Palm Procession and Holy Mass
18.00 Vespers
Holy Thursday, April 5
18.00 The Lord\’s Supper
Good Friday, April 6
16.00 Adoration of the Cross
Holy Saturday, April 7
23.00 Easter Vigil and Holy Mass
Easter Sunday, April 8
11.00 Holy Mass
18.00 Vesper
EMMAUS-NICOPOLIS
(north of Latrun on Rte 3), Tel: 08-925 6940, 052-356 2071
Services will be in French.
Holy Friday, April 6
15.00 Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion
Holy Saturday, April 7
21.00 Easter Vigil and Holy Mass
Easter Monday, April 9
17.00 Holy Mass
• • •

Orthodox Easter 2012

At the Church of the Holy Sepulcher: Services are 1 hour later than indicated

Saturday, April 7
14.50 Solemn Entry of the Patriarch into the Basilica – Service in the Armenian Gallery in the Holy Sepulcher

Palm Sunday, April 8
5.45 Entry of the Patriarchal Vicar into the Basilica – morning and evening services on the Armenian Gallery
9.00 Entry of the Patriarch into the Basilica – Holy Mass in the Armenian Gallery
11.15 Procession 3 times round the Rotunda followed by Copts and Syrians

Tuesday, April 10
8.15 Holy Mass in the Chapel of St. John (parvis Holy Sepulcher)

Maundy Thursday, April 12
9.00 Solemn Episcopal Mass in St. James Cathedral (Armenian Monastery)
14.30 Washing of the Feet in St. James Cathedral
16.30 Procession from Deir ez-Zeitun via Zion Gate to the House of Caiphas in the Armenian Monastery and back
19.00 Solemn Mourning Service in St. James
Good Friday, April 13
12.15 Service of the Holy Crucifixion at the Armenian Gallery (Holy Sepulcher)
16.00 Solemn Burial Service in St. James Cathedral

Holy Saturday, April 14
8.30 Solemn Opening of the door of the Holy Sepulcher (by the Armenians )
10.30 Entry of the Patriarch into the Basilica
11.00 Ceremony of the Sealing of the Tomb
12.05 Coptic and Syrian Clergy call on Armenian Patriarch
12.10 Armenian, Coptic and Syrian call on Greek Patriarch
12.55 Armenian Prelate enters the Tomb following the Greek Patriarch
13.00 Ceremony of the Holy Fire
13.10 Procession 3 times round the Rotunda by the Armenians, followed by Copts and Syrians
14.45 Holy Mass in the Armenian Gallery
16.00 Holy Mass in St. James Cathedral

Easter Sunday, April 15
1.30 Entry of the Patriarchal Vicar into the Basilica – Service in the Armenian Gallery
4.00 Third Procession 3 times round the Rotunda followed by Copts and Syrians
6.30 Entry of the Patriarch into the Basilica
6.45 High Mass in front of the Tomb
15.00 Solemn Procession Service in St. Jame\’ Cathedral and in the Armenian Monastery

GREEK ORTHODOX PATRIARCHATE
Greek Patriarchate Road, Tel: 02-627 4941
Services will be in Greek.
At the Holy Sepulcher the services are 1 hour later than indicated

Lazarus Saturday, April 7
6.45 Liturgy in the Sanctuary of the Ascension on Mt. of Olives and procession
9.30 Procession from Greek Orthodox Monastery in Bethany
14.00 To the Tomb of Lazarus – Service in Bethany
17.00 In Bethphage

Palm Sunday, April 8
7.00 Entry of the Patriarch into the Holy Sepulcher
17.15 Evening Service in the Katholicon

Monday, April 9
17.15 Evening Service in the Katholicon

Tuesday, April 10
17.15 Evening Service in the Katholicon
Maundy Thursday, April 12
5.30 Holy Liturgy in St. James (next to the Holy Sepulcher)
8.00 Washing of the Feet (In the Parvis of the Holy Sepulcher)

Good Friday, April 13
9.00 Service in Calvary (Royal hours)
9.30 Procession from the Praetorium (Convent Prison of Christ) Via Dolorosa to the Holy Sepulcher
14.00 Service in the Katholicon
19.30 Holy Parvis
20.00 Procession through the Holy Sepulcher and 3 times
round the Aedicule of the Holy Tomb

Holy Saturday, April 14
12.00 Entry of the Patriarch
12.10 Armenian, Coptic and Syrian Clergy make traditional call on the Greek Patriarch
13.00 Ceremony of the Holy Fire
23.00 Entry of the Patriarch into the Basilica
00.00 Procession 3 times round the Rotunda – Holy Liturgy of the Resurrection

Easter Sunday, April 15
12.15 Solemn Procession from the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate to the Basilica of the Holy Sepulcher

COPTIC ORTHODOX PATRIARCHATE
IX Station of Via Dolorosa, Tel: 02-627 264
Services will be in Arabic.
At the Holy Sepulcher the services are 1 hour later than indicated.

Palm Sunday, April 8
7.00 The Mass in the Holy Sepulcher (till 11.30)
11.30 Procession in the Holy Sepulcher

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, April 9-11
Prayer of the Holy Week in St. Anthony’s Church at
the IX. Station of the Via Dolorosa from 6.00 – 7.30, 12.00 – 14.00
and 17.00 – 20.00.

Maundy Thursday, April 12
8.00 – 14.00 Washing of the feet and mass in St. Anthony\’s Church

Good Friday, April 13
11.00 am – 16.00 Bascha and Burial prayers in the Holy Sepulcher
18.00 – 20.00 Procession of the Stations of the Cross in the Holy Sepulcher
23.00 pm – 7.00 Abu – Galamsees Service

Holy Saturday, April 14
11.00 Ceremony of the Holy Fire
16.00 Service at the Coptic Chapel in the Holy Sepulcher
23.00 Entrance to the Holy Sepulcher and Easter service.

Easter Sunday, April 15
4.00 Conclusion of the Easter Mass and procession

ETHIOPIAN ORTHODOX PATRIARCHATE
8th Station of Via Dolorosa, Tel. 02-628 2848
Services will be in Amharic. At the Holy Sepulcher: Services are 1 hour later than indicated

Palm Sunday (HOSAYNA), April 8
1.00 – 6.00 Mahlet (Laudes) using Drams, Sticks, with the clash of Cymbals (Sistrum) ancient musical instrument in the Chapel of Deir as-Sultan Monastery
7.00 – 9.00 Qeddase – The Divine Liturgy
9.00 – 10.30 Procession 3 times round the Dome and reading from the Four Gospels and Chanting from the St. Yared\’s Chant (The Sunday school youth will sing the Hoseanna).

Monday – Thursday, April 9-12
All day long Prayer in Deir as-Sultan Monastery Chapel

Maundy Thursday, April 12
11.00 Washing of the Feet Ceremony
13.00 – 15.00 Qeddase (The Divine Liturgy)

Good Friday, April 13
9.30 Procession of the Cross from the House of Pilate to the Golgotha; after the procession prayer until 17.00

Holy Saturday, April 14
7.00 The Archbishop blesses and distributes to the people the Qetema reeds in the Deir as-Sultan Church Yard.
18.00 Procession from the Archbishop\’s Residence to the Deir as-Sultan Monastery
19.30 The official opening prayer service of the Easter Sunday under the tent (Deir as-Sultan):
a) Mahalet St. Yared\’s Laudes using Drums, sticks, with the clashes of Cymbals (Sistrum = ancient musical instrument)
b) Reading of the Gospel
c) Easter light Candle Ceremony
20.00 Procession 3 times around the Dome
21.00 – 00.00 Mahlet (Laudes)
00.00 – 3.00 Qeddase (The Divine Liturgy)

Easter Sunday, April 15
3.00 Ending and dismissal

RUMANIAN ORTHODOX PATRIARCHATE
46 Shivtei Israel Street, Tel. 02-626 3034
The Rumanian Orthodox Church joins the Greek-Orthodox processions and Liturgies in the Holy Sepulcher, apart from the below mentioned particular celebrations.

Palm Sunday, April 8
8.30 Holy Liturgy
19.00 The Easter Vigil (Denie)

Mon. Tue. Wed., April 9-11
19.00 The Easter Vigil (Denie)

Maundy Thursday, April 12
18.00 The Easter Vigil (Denie)

Good Friday, April 13
14.00 – 17.00 Vespers and Vigil (Denie)

Easter Sunday, April 15
00.00 Vigil and Easter Holy Liturgy
3.00 Easter Vespers

Easter Monday and Tuesday, April 16 and 17
8.30 Holy Liturgy
19.00 Vespers

RUSSIAN ORTHODOX ECCLESIAL MISSION – Moscow Patriarchate
Russian Compound
Cheshin Street, Tel. 02-625 2565
Services will be in russian. All services in the Holy Trinity Cathedral
Wednesday, April 11
17.00 Orthron

Maundy Thursday, April 12
6.00 Vespers with Liturgy
17.00 Orthron with reading of the twelve Gospels

Good Friday, April 13
7.00 Royal Hour service
19.00 Orthron with the procession of the Holy Shroud and burial service.

Holy Saturday, April 14
1.00 Vigil with Liturgy
23.00 Reading of the \”Acts of the Apostles\”

Easter Sunday, April 15
1.00 Easter Midnight service
2.00 Easter Procession and Vigil
3.00 Easter Liturgy
6.00 The Great Vespers

SYRIAN ORTHODOX PATRIARCHATE, St. Mark\’s Church
Ararat Street, Tel: 02-628 3304
At the Holy Sepulcher the services are 1 hour later than indicated

Palm Sunday, April 8
00.30 Procession 3 times round the Rotunda in the Holy Sepulcher
18.30 Prayer of the Five Candles of the Wise Virgins at St. Mark\’s Church

Maundy Thursday, April 12
16.30 Washing of the Feet at St. Mark\’s Church

Good Friday, April 13
17.00 Burial Procession in the Holy Sepulcher
19.00 Burial Procession at St. Mark\’s Church

Holy Saturday, April 14
12.05 Coptic and Syrian call on Armenian Patriarch at the Holy Sepulcher
13:00 Ceremony of the Holy Fire
13.30 Second Procession three times round the Rotunda by the Copts and Syrians following the Armenians
23.30 Service in the Chapel of St. Nicodemus in the Holy Sepulcher

Easter Sunday, April 15
2.00 Service in the Chapel of St. Nicodemus in the Holy Sepulcher, High Mass
4.00 Third Procession three times round the Rotunda
5.00 Ceremony ends

Easter Monday, April 16
9.30 Solemn Mass at St. Mark’s Church

For further information on Christian tourism and Holy Land tours, contact Travelujah.

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Gil Zohar is a Canadian born Israeli tour guide and journalist and writes regularly for Travelujah, the leading Christian social network focused on travel to the Holy Land. People can learn, plan and share their Holy Land tour and travel experiences on Travelujah.

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