Holy Saturday

Holy Saturday is the last day of Lent, and commemorates the day Jesus spent in the grave.  Jesus body was taken off the cross and placed in the tomb with haste as the Sabbath approached.  The Jewish Sabbath begins on Friday at 6 p.m.  Early on the first day of the week (Sunday) the women came to the tomb to anoint the body and found that Jesus was not there.

To do justice to Good Friday, we must celebrate the crucifixion without giving away the resurrection.  Holy Saturday is a solemn occasion.  Catholic churches observe very limited sacraments, and the church remains stripped bare (since Mass on Thursday).  The Catholic altar remains stripped, while Orthodox churches may have the altar draped in black.  Protestants?   Protestant churches, in America any way, do little with Good Friday and nothing on Saturday that I’m aware of.  A growing trend on Good Friday seems to be cross carrying events, a parade of sorts with participants taking turns bearing an actual wooden cross, reenacting Jesus’ march to Calvary.

Again, if your Good Friday service keeps alluding to the resurrection the tone is wrong for the whole weekend.  Friday ends with Jesus in the tomb and his followers scattered and frightened.  Holy Saturday is practically a time of mourning.  Then Easter, like Christmas, means more after the waiting.