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Good Friday

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Church Holy Sepulchre

Today is Good Friday, a Christian religious holiday commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death at Calvary. For those who haven’t thought about it, the crucifixion happened just after Passover. Jesus had come to Jerusalem for Passover, and the last supper is believed to have a Passover connection. I was fortunate enough to have visited Jerusalem for the convergence of Easter and Passover during the very early 1980s. Since the two holidays are related, obviously, they will eventually come together on the same weekend. The year 2015 is one example whereas the previous time was in 2012. We will have three years in succession beginning in 2018. The last sequence of three years converging was 1998-2000.

The Church of the Holy Sepulchre was amazing, but also an example that there can never be a full agreement among any group of people. Today, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is shared among several Christian denominations who have not been able to agree on how to finish the interior in certain sections. So here we have a church constructed during the 4th century AD that there is still no full agreement on.


HELENA-auAccording to Eusebius of Caesarea, the Roman Emperor Hadrian during the 2nd century AD built a temple dedicated to the goddess Aphrodite over the tomb in which Jesus had been buried to discourage the cult. In 325/326 AD, Constantine the Great, ordered that the pagan temple be replaced by a church. It was at that time during the construction of the church that Helena, Constantine’s mother, is believed to have rediscovered the “true cross.” Socrates Scholasticus (born 380 AD) gives a full description of the discovery in his “Ecclesiastical History.” It is claimed that Helena found three crosses at the site and she tested each by holding them over a corpse. As the account goes, when the corpse rose up from the dead under one cross, she proclaimed that was the true cross and tomb.


See, I use to have hair (no, that is not my ex-wife).

Happy Easter