If Jesus died, why is it a "Good Friday"?

If Jesus died, why is it a "Good Friday"? ...

Millions of Christians across the globe today are experiencing one of their most painful moments of faith.

In Jerusalem, a feast commemorates the suffering, crucifixion, and death of Jesus of Nazareth more than 2,000 years ago.

At first glance, Good Friday appears to be the ultimate misnomer. Why is it also called "Good" Friday?

On one level, the answer is about the meaning of words.

The term "Good" as used for Good Friday is an Old English term, which means holy. It is often also called Holy Friday.

In another sense, Good Friday is always connected to Easter Sunday, which is a joyful day of Jesus' resurrection. If he had not died first, he would not have been resurrected.

Carrying the Cross

By carrying a large wooden cross and a crown of thorns symbolic of Christ's suffering, the faithful often act out the events of Good Friday.

They follow the Via Dolorosa, or Way of the Cross, in Jerusalem.

"Whoever wants to be my disciple must seize themselves and take up their cross and follow me," Jesus told his followers. (Matthew 16:24, New International Version)

Even if given a choice to free Jesus or Barabbas, the events of Good Friday described in the Bible include the trial of Jesus and the shouts of the crowd to "Crucify him."

As participants travel to Kelly Ingram Park, a "Stations of the Cross" pilgrimage will begin at noon.

Today, the "Way of the Cross" will be played out in Homewood Park starting at 10:30 p.m. following Oxmoor Road, and ending at Edgewood Presbyterian Church.

At 2:30 p.m., a live "Way of the Cross" will be held at St. Aloysius Catholic Church, 751 Academy Drive in Bessemer.

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