News / Middle East

Christian Pilgrims Observe Good Friday in Jerusalem

Christian worshipers carry a cross towards the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, traditionally believed by many to be the site of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, during the Good Friday procession in Jerusalem's Old City, Mar. 29, 2013.Christian worshipers carry a cross towards the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, traditionally believed by many to be the site of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, during the Good Friday procession in Jerusalem's Old City, Mar. 29, 2013.
x
Christian worshipers carry a cross towards the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, traditionally believed by many to be the site of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, during the Good Friday procession in Jerusalem's Old City, Mar. 29, 2013.
Christian worshipers carry a cross towards the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, traditionally believed by many to be the site of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, during the Good Friday procession in Jerusalem's Old City, Mar. 29, 2013.
Robert Berger
Christians around the world are observing Good Friday, which marks the crucifixion of Jesus Christ.

Thousands of pilgrims packed the narrow alleys of Jerusalem’s Old City for the traditional Good Friday Procession. Some people hoisted big wooden crosses on their shoulders as they marched down the cobblestoned path known asVia Dolorosa, the Way of Sorrows.

The faithful retraced the footsteps of Jesus with the traditional devotion known as the stations of the Cross - reading scriptures, saying prayers and touching the sacred stones.

“I feel humbled before the Providence of God,” said John Thekkekara who came from Kerala, India. "This is believed to be the day on which Jesus was crucified. And it is the greatest experience in my life to be here on this day in Jerusalem.”

Pilgrims came from all over the world, from the Far East to the West. Mary Hull is from Georgia in the United States.

“To actually be here at the day of the crucifixion, wow, it just gives me that immediacy and that sense of gratitude for what He was willing to go through for me. I feel close to Jesus. I feel His presence,” she said.

Israeli soldiers armed with assault rifles guarded the route, as the procession wound up at the ancient Church of the Holy Sepulcher, the traditional site of Jesus’ crucifixion. It is there on Easter Sunday that Christians will celebrate the resurrection.

  • Catholic worshippers celebrate Good Friday inside the Our Lady of Aparecida Basilica in Aparecida do Norte, Sao Paulo, March 29, 2013.
  • People attend the 18th annual 'Way of the Cross Over the Brooklyn Bridge Ceremony' in New York, March 29, 2013.
  • A worker lights a cross before Pope Francis leads a Via Crucis (Way of the Cross) procession during Good Friday celebrations in front of the Colosseum in Rome, March 29, 2013.
  • Pope Francis attends the Celebration of the Lord's Passion in Saint Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, March 29, 2013.
  • Penitents of the Jesus Yacente brotherhood take part in a Holy Week procession in Zamora, northern Spain, March 28, 2013.
  • David Carnell, center, plays the part of Jesus Christ during a "Journey to the Cross" procession while celebrating Good Friday in Sydney, Australia, March 29, 2013.
  • Tourists watch as penitents, bloodied after self-flagellation, walk during a Good Friday crucifixion re-enactment in San Pedro Cutud, Pampanga province, Philippines, March 29, 2013.
  • Ruben Enaje, who was portrayed as Jesus Christ 27 times, as a nail is removed from his hand after being crucified during Good Friday rituals in San Pedro Cutud, Philippines, March 29, 2013.
  • An Indian Christian prays at Our Lady of Lourdes Church on Good Friday in Hyderabad, India, March 29, 2013.
  • An Indonesian Christian devotee carries a bamboo cross as he walks with others during a Good Friday procession in Klaten, Central Java, Indonesia, March 29, 2013.
  • Catholics carry a cross at a street parade during a special Good Friday mass in Colombo, Sri Lanka, March 29, 2013.
  • Members of the Catholic clergy hold candles as they take part in a procession at the Washing of the Feet ceremony during Holy Week in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem's Old City, March 28, 2013.
  • People take photos of a Jesus Christ statue at the end of a Holy Week mass at the Church of Divine Mercy in Panama City, Panama, March 28, 2013.
  • An indigenous woman walks at Canaan fair, which is part of Holy Week events in Ayacucho, Peru, March 28, 2013.
  • Catholics hold candles during the Way of the Cross re-enactment in a Holy Week procession, Luque, Paraguay, March 27, 2013.

You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More