Zeleni Sviata

Pentecost Sunday falls on the fiftieth day after Easter Sunday. This feast commemorates the visible descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles. The Holy Spirit appeared in the form of "parted tongues of fire", representing the principal work of the Apostles to preach the Gospel to all nations, all continents, and all races. The descent of the Holy Spirit completed the wonderful work of Christ on behalf of the Apostles, rendering them intrepid heralds of the Gospel.

The whole week after Pentecost is "Zalhalnytsia" or Compact Week. In days past, it was a week when meat was permitted to be eaten on Friday.

This feast has been observed in the Church since the time of the Apostles. On Pentecost, both the homes of the faithful and the churches were traditionally decorated with green branches and green flowers. The feast is also known as "Zeleni Sviata" or Green Holy Day for this reason.

The custom of decorating the homes and churches with green branches is very old. It is rooted in the Jewish custom to adorn their homes with greens in remembrance of the Law which God gave them on Mount Sinai through Moses.

In days past, the day after Pentecost was a holy day of obligation in the Byzantine Rite . Pentecost Monday is currently celebrated as a simple holy day. Attendance at a Divine Liturgy is encouraged but not obligatory.

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