Follow the masses as thousands flock to J'lem for Easter

Holy Week celebrations are well underway throughout Israel; find out what is going on with this list of special events, gatherings.

April 21, 2011 10:24
2 minute read.
Christians gather in Jerusalem to celebrate Easter

Christians in Jerusalem Old City 311. (photo credit: Travelujah)


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For further information on Christian tourism and Holy Land Tours to Israel contact  Travelujah.

Easter celebrations are well underway in Jerusalem and throughout Israel as an estimated 100,000 Christian tourists are expected to flood the Holy Land this weekend to take part in the Easter season.

The Christians from overseas join the 146,000 Christians living in Israel who deem Easter their most important holiday.

This year, both the Orthodox and Catholic Easters coincide on April 24.

Jerusalem is the center of the Resurrection story. The following is a list of masses, gatherings and special events this weekend that commemorate the last days and resurrection of Jesus:

Thursday, April 21

Holy Thursday
8 a.m. Washing of the Feet at the Holy Sepulchre
2 p.m. Armenian Orthodox Foot Washing Ceremony at St. James Church
3:30 p.m. Catholic Pilgrimage to St. James in the Armenian Quarter and to the churches on Mount Zion
5 p.m. Armenian processional from the olive tree at the Holy Archangels Church, believed to be where Jesus before meeting Annas, the father-in-law of Caiaphas the High Priest (John 18:19-24). 9 p.m. Gethsemane: Holy Hour in the Basilica of the Agony

Friday, April 22

Good Friday
9:30 a.m. Good Friday Service in English at the Garden Tomb
12:15 p.m. Via Dolorosa: Way of the Cross. Starting from the First Station with the Franciscan Friars, followed by various
8:10 p.m. “Funeral" Procession at the Holy Sepulchre

Saturday, April 23

Holy Saturday
6:30 a.m. Catholic Easter Vigil at Holy Sepulchre
1 p.m. Referred to as the Saturday of Light, or Sapt il-Noor, the Holy Fire Ceremony takes place at the Holy Sepulchre and is observed by Eastern Orthodox sects, such as the Greek, Syrian, Armenian, Greek and Russian churches as well as the Copts. Must arrive with a pass issued by one of the churches hours in advance of the service.
16:15 p.m. Resurrection Service in Arabic, with translation into Hebrew
7 p.m. Ethiopian Holy Fire service on roof of Holy Sepulchre. No pass required.

Sunday, April 24

Easter Sunday
holy sepulchre, tomb, easterMasses held at Holy Sepulchre, St. James Church and other churches in the Old CIty
6:30 a.m. “Son-Rise” Resurrection Service in English at the Garden Tomb
9:30 a.m. “Son-Rise” Resurrection Service in English at the Garden Tomb
11 a.m. Resurrection Service in Scandinavian at the Garden Tomb
12:30 p.m. Resurrection Service in French at the Garden Tomb

Monday, April 25

Easter Monday
Masses held at Holy Sepulchre, St. James Church and other churches in the Old City

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