Lent and Easter

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At the divine services of Great and Holy Friday, the Church venerates the Shroud (in Ukrainian, plashchanytsia) as a sign of Christ’s death. The service of Jerusalem Matins (Matins of Holy Saturday) takes place before the Shroud. The hymnography mourns the One who has died in the hope of the coming Resurrection: “Weep not for me, O Mother … for I shall rise.” During the Paschal Midnight Office, the Shroud is transferred from the tomb of the Lord to the holy Altar. The faithful leave the church with lit candles and process three times around the church. Before the doors of the church, to the sound of the Paschal Tro­parion, “Christ is risen from the dead, trampling death by death, and to those in the tombs giving life,” the priest opens the doors of the church knocking with his hand-cross. The faithful enter the church, glorifying the Risen Christ, and like the myrrh-bearing women of the Paschal morning—the first witnesses of the Resurrection—they bring the good news of the Resurrection to the whole world: “This is the day of Resur­rection! Let us be illumined by the feast! Let us embrace each other. Let us call brothers and sisters even those that hate us, and forgive all by the Resurrection, and so let us cry: Christ is risen!