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Orthodox Good Friday in United Kingdom

Quick Facts

Many Orthodox Christians in the United Kingdom remember the events leading up to Jesus Christ's crucifixion on Great Friday, also known as Holy Friday.

Name

Orthodox Good Friday

Orthodox Good Friday 2014

Friday, April 18, 2014

Orthodox Good Friday 2015

Friday, April 10, 2015
List of dates for other years

Many Orthodox Christian churches in the United Kingdom often observe Good Friday at a later date than the Good Friday date observed by many western churches. Good Friday focuses on Jesus Christ’s death, which is described in the Christian bible. The day is also known as Great Friday, Holy Friday, and Holy and Great Friday.

Crucifix and Sunrise

Jesus' death on the cross is remembered on Good Friday.

©iStockphoto.com/Richard Goerg

What do people do?

Great Friday is traditionally a mourning and fasting day among Orthodox Christians in the United Kingdom, particularly in the Greek Orthodox churches. The day commemorates Jesus’ death by crucifixion. It is a day of serious observance that takes place prior to Easter Sunday.

Some churches, including many Romanian Orthodox churches, hold liturgies in the afternoon or evening.  Some women wear black clothing and headscarves during these liturgies. Hymns are also sung and prayers are made. Some people light candles and say a prayer for both the living and the dead on this day.

Public life

The Orthodox date for Good Friday is not a bank holiday in the United Kingdom. However parking conditions may be affected near churches where Great Friday liturgies are held, particularly in busy urban areas.

Background

Many Orthodox churches retained the Julian calendar after the Gregorian calendar was introduced in Europe in 1582. Therefore they often follow a different Easter date compared with many western churches. Easter holidays, such as Good Friday, are “moveable feasts” as these dates change according to calendar calculations.

There are different types of Orthodox churches in the United Kingdom, including the Greek Orthodox Church, the Romanian Orthodox Church, and the Russian Orthodox Church. Congregation numbers have grown in these churches due to immigration. Many Orthodox Christians in the United Kingdom are immigrants or descendents of immigrants from countries such as Greece, Romania and Russia. It is believed that Greek immigrants started arriving in London during the late 17th century. The United Kingdom experienced a surge of immigrants, especially from Greece and Russia, during the 20th century. They brought with them their customs, traditions, and religious observances.

Symbols

Many Orthodox Christian families prepare Easter eggs, which are beautifully decorated and often dyed red to symbolize the Jesus Christ’s blood.

About Orthodox Good Friday in other countries

Read more about Orthodox Good Friday.

Orthodox Good Friday Observances

WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday typeWhere it is observed
FriApr 131990Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 51991Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 241992Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 161993Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 291994Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 211995Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 121996Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 251997Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 171998Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 91999Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 282000Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 132001Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriMay 32002Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 252003Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 92004Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 292005Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 212006Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 62007Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 252008Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 172009Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 22010Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 222011Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 132012Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriMay 32013Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 182014Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 102015Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 292016Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 142017Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 62018Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 262019Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 
FriApr 172020Orthodox Good FridayOrthodox 

Related holidays

Other holidays in April 2014 in United Kingdom

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