Singapore—‘Happy Good Friday,’ wrote Manpower Minister Josephine Teo in Facebook a post on Apr 2, along with a list of six interesting facts about what is considered to be the most solemn day in the Christian calendar, as it marks the crucifixion of Christ.
Christians from different denominations from all over the world mark the day of Jesus’ passion and suffering with fasting and prayer, religious services, and the like.
But solemnity seemed to be the furthest thing from Ms Teo’s mind, as she posted about traditions surrounding Good Friday.
These include eating hot cross buns—“ a sweet, dense treat traditionally eaten on Good Friday are said to be packed with good luck!” And getting haircuts (to avoid headaches all year long).
Added to her list were the different names for this special day (Good Friday, Easter Friday, Holy Friday, Great Friday, silent Friday), the number of bell tolls traditionally sounded (33, for every year Christ spent on the Earth, as well as to commemorate his death).
The Minister capped her post with a fun fact from Bermuda, where there’s a “famous kite fest” on Good Friday.
She wished everyone a “restful and enjoyable long weekend” and then asked for a follow on Instagram @joteo.ylm.
Ms Teo was not the only Minister to commemorate Good Friday.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong struck a more solemn note in his Facebook post as he wrote, “Today is Good Friday, a day of prayer and reflection as Christians commemorate the crucifixion and death of Jesus Christ. This time of solemn meditation continues till Easter Sunday when Christians rejoice in Jesus’ resurrection.”
Mr Masagos Zulkifli, who is the Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs, wrote, “Today is Good Friday, a significant day for our Christian friends as they commemorate the death of Jesus Christ. This pensive spirit continues as Christians celebrate Jesus Christ’s resurrection on Easter Sunday.”
He added that it was “heartening to see how in Singapore, people of different faiths wish our Christian friends a blessed Good Friday,” noting that “Singapore is one of the few countries in the world where different religious communities can practice our faiths and live harmoniously with one another.”
Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung took the opportunity to remember how far Singapore has gone in a year’s time in relation to the pandemic.
“A blessed Good Friday to all Christians! One year ago, we had just entered Circuit Breaker and many aspects of our lives either came to a standstill or went online, such as services. A year on, we are in a much better position, because of the sacrifices of all members of our society. For that, we are all grateful.”
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