For Catholics around the world Ash Wednesday kicked off the Easter Season. Forty days of abstinence from a favorite pleasure was a token of their devotion to the upcoming sacrifice of the Messiah. On Palm Sunday the faithful brandished palm fronds to honor the Son of God entering Jerusalem. The New Testament recounted how his triumph was transformed into horror by the infamous crucifixion on the Mount. As a youth the priests and nuns led a mournful procession around our parish church stopping at each station of the cross to intone prayers, dispense incense, and light candles. There was nothing joyful about the ceremony.
Most other Americans understood the solemn weight of the day.
God's son was dead.
Good Friday was a day of buzzkills.
This Friday several recent emigres at the diamond exchange reeted me with a 'Happy Good Friday'.
"And Good Friday to you."
I didn't have the heart to tell these non-Christians from Asia about how Good Friday was about suffering.
Mostly because I'm an ex-Catholic.
So it's Happy Kill A God Day.
My mother wouldn't like that, but I became a heretic at the age of 8.
Happy Good Friday indeed.