Holy Saturday, Sábado Santo

April 4, 2015 – Holy Saturday, Sábado Santo

Holy Saturday (Sábado Santo) is a Christian holiday in Mexico prior to Easter Sunday. Solemn vigils are held at churches on this day.

Holy Saturday (Latin: Sabbatum Sanctum) i.e. the Saturday of Holy Week, also known as the Great Sabbath, Black Saturday, or Easter Eve, and called “Joyous Saturday” or “the Saturday of Light” among the Copts, is the day after Good Friday. It is the day before Easter and the last day of Holy Week in which Christians prepare for Easter. It commemorates the day that Jesus Christ’s body lay in the tomb. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holy_Saturday

Jesus is laid in the tomb, fresco paintings on the ceiling of the church. Photo: zatletic

Jesus is laid in the tomb, fresco paintings on the ceiling of the church.
Photo: BigStockPhoto.com | zatletic

14th Stations of the Cross, Jesus is laid in the tomb and covered in incense

14th Station of the Cross, Jesus is laid in the tomb and covered in incense. Photo: BigStockPhoto.com | zatletic

Holy Saturday (from Sabbatum Sanctum, its official liturgical name) is sacred as the day of the Lord’s rest; it has been called the “Second Sabbath” after creation. The day is and should be the most calm and quiet day of the entire Church year, a day broken by no liturgical function. Christ lies in the grave, the Church sits near and mourns. After the great battle He is resting in peace, but upon Him we see the scars of intense suffering…The mortal wounds on His Body remain visible….Jesus’ enemies are still furious, attempting to obliterate the very memory of the Lord by lies and slander.

Mary and the disciples are grief-stricken, while the Church must mournfully admit that too many of her children return home from Calvary cold and hard of heart. When Mother Church reflects upon all of this, it seems as if the wounds of her dearly Beloved were again beginning to bleed.  http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/calendar/day.cfm?date=2014-04-19

Activities

  • Today we remember Christ in the tomb. It is not Easter yet, so it’s not time for celebration. The day is usually spent working on the final preparations for the biggest feast of the Church year. The list of suggested activities is long, but highlights are decorating Easter eggs and attending a special Easter food blessing.
  • For families with smaller children, you could create a miniature Easter garden, with a tomb. The figure of the risen Christ will be placed in the garden on Easter morning.
  • Another activity for families is creation of a paschal candle to use at home.
  • The Directory on Popular Piety discusses some of the various devotions related to Easter, including the Blessing of the Family Table, Annual Blessing of Family Home, the Via Lucis and the Visit to the Mother of the Risen Christ.
    http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/calendar/day.cfm?date=2014-04-19