Holy Week is the week immediately before Easter beginning on Palm Sunday.
The earliest allusion to the custom of marking this week as a whole with special observations is to be found in the Apostolical Constitutions (v, 18,19), dating from the latter half of the 3rd and 4th century.
In this text, abstinence from flesh is commanded for all the days, while for the Friday and Saturday an absolute fast is commanded. Dionysius Alexandrinus in his canonical epistle (AD 260), refers to the 91 fasting days implying that the observance of them had already become an established usage in his time.
tPerhaps we don’t observe Holy Week in quite the same way today, but many of our observations remind us of this special week as we prepare for Easter Day. Palm Crosses on Palm Sunday, in some churches feet washing on Maunday Thursday or a three- hour devotional service and hot cross buns on Good Friday are all symbolic reminders of actions of Jesus in the last week of his life.
True preparation for the glory of Easter Day.
All Good Wishes Richard
Rector of Lewes