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Great Lent 2018

Christian Festival Lent marks the start of the Easter cycle in the Orthodox Christian Church

Christian Crosses signifying the start of Great Lent

When does Great Lent start and end?

Year Starts on
Shrove Monday
Ends on
Easter Sunday
2018 19 February 7 April
2017 27 February 17 April
2016 14 March 1 May
2015 23 February 12 April
2014 3 March 20 April

Great Lent corresponds to Lent as found in Western Christianity, though the length of the periods are calculated in different ways.

They both use a period of 40 days between the beginning and end of Lent, because of the 40 days that Jesus is said to have spent fasting the desert. However, Western Christendom doesn't count Sundays because Jesus is recorded as having resurrected on a Sunday, whereas Eastern Orthodox churches do count Sundays.

The word "lent" is derived from the Anglo-Saxon 'lencten' which literally means "spring". 'Lencten' has a root in the Germanic word for long, which assigned itself to Spring as the days become longer.

In several countries, lent marks the start of spring. For example, in Greece, Clean Monday (Ash Monday) is taken to be the first day of spring.

The Orthodox Easter period influences a range of festivals and events. The following is an overview of the events. Click the name of a holiday to read more about an individual event.

Event 2017 Remarks
Shrove Monday 19 February Clean Monday begins the season of Great Lent in Eastern Orthodox Churches.
Good Friday 6 April Good Friday occurs on the Friday before Easter. The day commemorates the Crucifixion of Jesus.
Easter Sunday 7 April Celebrates the resurrection of Jesus from the dead after his death by crucifixion
Pentecost Monday 28 May The day commemorates the coming of the Holy Spirit in the form of flames to the Apostles, as recorded in the New Testament in Acts, 2.

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