Pentecost – Holy Trinity Day

One of the main Christian holidays, Holy Trinity Day, is celebrated on the 50th day after Easter, this year it falls on June 12th. About the history, traditions and meaning of this day.

The celebration of this day began in 381, when the doctrine of the three hypostases of God was approved at the Second Ecumenical Council of Constantinople: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. On the same day, the fullness of the Holy Trinity was revealed.

In accordance with the New Testament, Jesus Christ, before Ascension into the Kingdom of Heaven, promised his disciples-apostles to send them the Holy Spirit from His Father for comfort. After the Ascension of Christ, every day the apostles gathered in the Zion Room in Jerusalem to read the Holy Scriptures and pray. On the tenth day after the Ascension and on the 50th day after the Resurrection of Christ, the apostles in the upper room heard a noise. Appeared fiery tongues rested on each of them. Thus the disciples of Jesus were filled with the Holy Spirit. They began to speak in different languages ​​in order to preach to different nations.

Since then, the Day of the Descent of the Holy Spirit has become the day of the creation of the Christian church, which, through the efforts of the disciples of Christ, began to spread throughout the world. However, starting from the XIV century, the feast of the Trinity does not coincide with Pentecost among Catholics – it is associated with the glorification of the Holy Trinity and is celebrated a week later.

On the eve of the Day of the Holy Trinity, the Orthodox have an all-night vigil in the churches, and the next day, on the feast of the Trinity, one of the most beautiful and solemn services takes place in the churches. After the liturgy, great vespers is served, glorifying the descent of the Holy Spirit, and three prayers are read with kneeling clergy and parishioners. Thus, the post-Easter period ends, during which no prostrations and kneelings are performed in churches.

By tradition, Trinity temples are decorated with green branches and grass, symbolizing the renewal of believers thanks to the Holy Spirit. Priests wear green clothes – this color symbolizes the life-giving and renewing power of the Holy Spirit. The Monday after Trinity is Spiritual Day, dedicated to the glorification of the Holy Spirit.

Many rites performed on the Trinity originated from the Green Christmastide. This holiday was celebrated at the end of May earlier, before the adoption of Christianity in the Slavic calendar, and marked the transition of spring into summer. Its main components were rituals associated with the cult of vegetation, girlish festivities, and commemoration of the dead. On Trinity week, teenage girls aged 7-12 decorated the house outside and inside with birch branches, the children danced around the decorated birch with songs, and a festive meal was arranged.

On the eve of the Holy Trinity Day, it was customary to remember the dead. This day is called Parents’ Day or “Suffocating Saturday”.



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