Holy Week, week before Easter. Its chief days are named Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday. In Christian life it is a week of devout observance, commemorating the Passion and Jesus' death on the cross. The liturgies have special features and services, e.g., Tenebrae. In the Roman Catholic Church these rise to a climax with the vigil of the Resurrection on the evening of Holy Saturday. At this time the paschal candle is blessed with the hymn Exsultet, and Lent, with its fast, ends at midnight.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.