Friday, April 18, 2014
Easter Friday in the MTC
Easter is celebrated across the board in Ghana. It is celebrated by both Christians and non-Christians alike, but each group has its own interpretation and activities to mark the occasion. For Christians, the celebration starts well before Palm Sunday, but Palm Sunday is the largest, most widely known event before Easter. Palm Sunday marks Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem before His crucifixion, death and resurrection. It is important to Christians all over the world, and Ghana is no exception. In Ghana, Palm Sunday is celebrated by various church congregations with processions through some principal streets. Paraders wave palm branches and handkerchiefs and sing “Hosanna! Hosanna! Hosanna!” Celebrating the triumphant entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem gives Christians the hope to seek God’s kingdom. The next important day of the Easter season for Ghanaian Christians is Good Friday. Nearly everyone tries to attend church on Good Friday because they believe that their sins from the year are crucified on the cross with the Son of God. In most orthodox churches, men and women are dressed in dark-color mourning clothes and are in solemn moods. But what of the Latter-day Saints?
The Prophet Joseph Smith once declared that all things, “which pertain to our religion are only appendages” to the Atonement of Jesus Christ. 1 Elder Holland in a major address to missionaries throughout the world prior to Easter a number of years ago said "in like manner and for the same reasons, every truth that a missionary or member teaches is only an appendage to the central message of all time—that Jesus is the Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God, the Holy Messiah, the Promised One, the Savior and Redeemer of the world; that He alone burst the bands of death and triumphed over the captivity of hell; that no one of us could ever have those same blessings without His intervention in our behalf; and that there never shall be any “other name given nor any other way nor means whereby salvation can come unto the children of men, [except] in and through the name of Christ, the Lord Omnipotent. (Elder Holland, March 2001 Ensign)