Elevation of the Holy Cross in Eastern Christianity Date in the current year: September 27, 2017

Elevation of the Holy Cross in Eastern Christianity The Elevation of the Holy Cross, also referred to as the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, is one of the twelve Great Feasts celebrated by the Orthodox Church. It is observed on September 14 in the Julian calendar, which corresponds to September 27 in the Gregorian calendar.

In the Byzantine Rite, the Feast of the Cross commemorates two events: the discovery of the True cross by Saint Helena in 326 and the recapture of the cross by Emperor Heraclius from the Persians in 628.

The True Cross is the cross used in the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. According to legend, it was found by Helena, the mother of Constantine the Great, during her pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Helena and Constantine ordered to build the Church of the Holy Sepulchre at the site of the discovery.

In 614, the Persians attacked the church and carried way the portion of the cross that was kept inside. The Byzantine Emperor Heraclius recaptured the True Cross in 628. The cross was returned to the church in 629, after a tour of the Byzantine Empire.

In Eastern Orthodox practice, the Feast of the Cross is always a fast day. The faithful are expected to observe a strict fast. It is prohibited to eat meat, dairy products and fish, but the eating of oil is allowed.

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Religious Holidays

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Elevation of the Holy Cross, Exaltation of the Holy Cross, religious holiday, Christian holiday, Orthodox Church