On In History & Religion

Was Jesus Nailed To His Hand Or Wrist? There's A Lot More That You Need To Know!

With more than 31% of Christianity adherents living among us, it is more than obvious that we must be aware as to why they celebrate Good Friday. Yet, never buy anything on a Black Friday. Living in India, you get a day off since the day is a gazetted holiday unless it's the U.S.A.; then only 12 states consider it as a holiday.  Just like this on reading further, you'll get to know a lot more about why it's celebrated, what it's called in different geographical locations or even how distinctly people around the globe prefer to celebrate it.

Good Friday is a gesture of respect for the crucifixion of Jesus Christ

Of what we all have been used to, would make some of you uncomfortable when it comes knowing what history holds in the name of Good Friday. Don't be amazed yet until you read what all this page holds when you scroll.


Along with that, it is to commemorate Jesus’ death at Calvary (a site immediately outside Jerusalem's walls where Jesus was crucified). A lot many people and countries make it a part of their lives by celebrating it. Still one can't ignore the fact what happened that day in past.

Not a federal holiday in the U.S.

Only considered a state holiday in 12 (among 50) of the individual states. Namely: Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Indiana, Kentucky (Half Day), Louisiana, New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, Tennessee and Texas. You can still choose to not work tomorrow, chill!

And, after Good Friday

Be careful on a Black Friday because people are way too crazy that day and these photos just reveal it.

Closed Stock Markets 

Apart from the 12 states listed above, several stock markets around the world are also closed on Good Friday. Although, in some countries, the foreign exchange and bond trading markets are open for a partial business day.

School Breaks

Talking about institutions, Universities and Public Schools take the decision to call it off. It’s considered as a day off or part of spring break when holidays are clubbed together.

Another name

Of the seven different names told in this post, Good Friday is also referred to as 'Spring Break', considered to be a generic name in some political contexts.

Community differences

With such a diverse population, the human race has got used to accepting the difference in mindset and also moving ahead with their own. Surprisingly, the calculation of this day differs in Eastern and Western Christianity.

Germany Bans

Similarly, the Germans tend to share slightly different beliefs when it comes to Good Friday. In Germany, dancing and horse racing are banned on this day. It's considered blasphemous.

A day to mourn

Also, in German-speaking countries, it is generally referred to as 'Mourning Friday'.

Multiple German names

The day also goes by the following names in Germany: Stiller Freitag (Silent Friday) and Hoher Freitag (High Friday, Holy Friday).

Nothing 'Good' about Friday

The supreme judicial and ecclesiastical council of ancient Jerusalem sentenced Jesus to death after the high priest condemned Jesus for blasphemy. Who knew, the day would end up being called as 'Good Friday'.

More names

 Also referred as 'Great and Holy Friday', or simply 'Great Friday' by Byzantine Christians.

Rituals followed by Byzantine

Adult Byzantine Christians opt for a strict fast on Great and Holy Friday, abstaining from all food and drink the entire day only to the extent one can follow considering their health condition. And, those unable to are given bread and water after sunset.

What happens on Good Friday?

The day is spent by a public reading of specific Psalms and the Gospels, even hymns are sung about Christ’s death. Not only this, people in Holy week participate in the death and resurrection of Jesus along with annual commemoration of past events.

This is what's next in line...

On this very night “The Lamentation at the Tomb” service is celebrated as part of Holy and Great Saturday. Also known as Jerusalem Matins, takes place around the tomb of Christ.

There's a dress code too

Clergy wears black vestments on Good Friday instead of purple or red. The church hangings also happen to see a change when switched to black and are kept that way till Divine Liturgy on Great Saturday.

Certain exceptions

Like Corporates nowadays following flexible timing regulations, it seems they must have adopted the habit from Good Friday culture. Since, places where it is not a day off for people, the afternoon liturgical service is postponed for a few hours after the recommended time of 3 pm.

Consists of three parts

The following are the three parts of Good Friday liturgy: the Liturgy of the Word, the Veneration of the Cross, and Holy Communion.

Acts of reparations

For the sufferings and insults of Jesus, Roman Catholic tradition even has some specific prayers and devotions as “acts of reparation”.  Pope Pius XI referred the same as a duty for Catholics and quoted "some sort of compensation to be rendered for the injury" for the sufferings of Jesus.

For some 'Good' is not actually good!

As far as the origin of this day’s name is concerned, some still contend that it is a corruption of 'Good Friday'.

The 'Mass' rule

Still, the Mass is not celebrated on this day.

Jesus was in agony

The day which is mostly celebrated as a holiday, Jesus was in agony for six hours on the cross and was heard saying "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?", in the final hours.

Insecurity was one of the causes for crucifixion.

Pontius Pilate (fifth prefect of the Roman province of Judaea from AD 26–36) told the assembly that there was no basis for sentencing Jesus, but still handed Jesus over to be crucified in order to forestall a riot (Matthew 27:24–26) and ultimately keep his job.

The actual date is still unknown.

The crucifixion of Jesus most probably happened between the years 30 and 33 AD, in the 1st century of Judea (Roman province).

And, debatable too.

Since then, the day is all about the crucifixion of Jesus. During crucifixion, whether the nails were hammered in hands or wrists remains disputed.