This year, April 7, 2012, it is Holy Saturday (Western Christianity) and millions of Christians all over the world are commemorating the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the Holy Sepulchre here in Jerusalem.
It commemorates the day that Jesus Christ’s body laid in the tomb.
May people ask “what happened on holy Saturday with Jesus?”
The Holy Saturday which is also called as Holy Fire or Great Saturday commemorates the day that Jesus’ body laid in the tomb, the day after his crucifixion on Good Friday and a day before Easter. This miracle is considered to be the longest-attested annual miracle in the Christian world and it is celebrated only at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. The celebration of Holy Saturday (holy fire) has been consecutively documented sine 1106 A.D and it is one of the highlight of Easter in Jerusalem.
Today we are watching the celebration of Holy Saturday by Western Christianity at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre here in Jerusalem while the Celebration of the Holy Fire Miracle by the Eastern Christianity is taking place one week after, on April 14, 2012. This celebration by the Easter Christianity is so crowded that a special permission is required in order to get into the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. This year I was not able to get this permission, but for next year, I will ask for this permission well in advance so I be able to bring this extra ordinary ceremony to you through my video blog.
As for now, here below is a description of this Holy Fire miracle celebrated on Holy Saturday by Eastern Christianity at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre:
At noon on Holy Saturday (after Good Friday), the two highest ranking clergymen in Israel – the Greek Orthodox Patriarch and the Armenian Patriarch – enter the Holy Sepulchre while all lights are turned off and they go in without any matches or lighters.
Then the Armenian remains inside the Angel Chapel where the angel was sitting when he appeared to Mary Magdalene after the Resurrection of Jesus, and the Orthodox Patriarch enter the chamber of the Holy Sepulchre. While the congregation subsequently chants “Lord have mercy on us” (brief prayer used in the Greek Orthodox, Roman Catholic, and Anglican Churches), a light from Heaven light 33 candles tied together by the Orthodox Patriarch. This light symbolizes the resurrection of Jesus Christ. When the Orthodox and Armenian Patriarchs exiting the Aedicule, they distribute the Holy Fire to their escorts and the faithful gathered around them. From the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the Holy Fire is relayed on to many churches throughout the world using special designed lamps.
This event is broadcast live all over the Christian world, and this year, for the first time, it is also recorded and uploaded to JerualemExperience.com, the only Video Blog about Jerusalem, as part of a series of Videos about Easter in Jerusalem.
This Holy Fire is said to be the same Holy Fire that appeared to Moses in the burning bush. It is said that for the first 33 minutes after its appearance the Holy Fire does not consume. People have reported touching the Holy Fire to their faces and even passing their hands through it without getting burned. These reports have served as yet another motivation for crowds to gather at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher on Holy Saturday as part of their celebration of Easter in Jerusalem.
A priest that once entered the tomb to collect the Holy Fire reported that after he has completed his prayers, a Holy light arose from the location where Jesus’ body once laid. This Holy Light is said to be of a hue indescribable in human terms which changes in color and behavior every year. It is from this Holy Light that the Holy Fire appears. The priest lighted the candles that he has brought into the chamber and emerged to share the Holy Fire with the awaiting crowd.
While many people make it a point to visit the Church of the Holy Sepulcher every year for Holy Saturday as part of their celebration of Easter in Jerusalem, Holy Saturday in Jerusalem 2012 is expected to be an extra special event. There have been many prophesies made about this year and there are some who have waited their whole lives for this year to arrive. There are those who have been planning to attend Holy Saturday in Jerusalem 2012 for many decades and are devoted to attending this event at all costs, believing it to be a day worth a lifetime.
Those who are able to make the journey to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher for Holy Saturday in Jerusalem 2012 are sure to be in for a treat. Not only do they get to celebrate the resurrections season in the Holy Land and see some of the sites that were witnessed by their Savior, but they get to take part in a miracle that occurs annually and touch the Holy Fire for themselves. For many there is no greater way to celebrate Easter season 2012 than by being in Jerusalem.
Let’s all live the Jerusalem Experience !!!!