Great Friday of the Crucifixion

On The Great Friday of the Crucifixion, two liturgies are celebrated in the Maronite Church. The first is the “Signing of the Chalice”. It is a Liturgy celebrated without the Words of Institution, remembering that today Christ himself is the sacrifice, the ultimate and the perfect oblation.

During the Liturgy, the priest invokes the Holy Spirit to descend upon the chalice placed at the altar and make it the Blood of Christ to be given during the communion with the hosts consecrated the night before in the Liturgy of the Holy Thursday.

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They transfixed You with nails
– but You turned these into medicaments for their diseases;
they pierced You with the sword, and there sprung forth water
– for the wiping away of their sins:
there came forth water, and blood too,
so that they might stand in awe
and wash their hands from Your blood.
The Slain One provided from His own blood
the water wherewith His slayers might wash clean
and themselves find life. — Ephrem

The second ceremony celebrated on the Great Friday of the Crucifixion is the Adoration of the Cross. It celebrated in memory of the death of Jesus Christ crucified on the Wood of Golgotha. Jesus was crucified between two criminals.

During the ceremony, while the priest is reading from the Gospel of Luke the crucifixion of Jesus, the deacon or the server will light the candle placed to the right of the Cross to symbolise the deliverance of the criminal on the right.

To this ceremony we bring flowers to honour the Holy Cross. The flowers are put into the shroud that will be laid in the tomb and the cross is buried until Easter Sunday.

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