Roman Catholics will likely play close attention to the Vatican on Good Friday, a major event of the Easter season. Pope Francis will deliver a service Friday at St. Peter’s Basilica, and there will be multiple ways for the faithful to view it in online.
A live stream of Francis’ service will be available at the Vatican’s YouTube page here. The Way of the Cross live stream, which takes place just after the service, can be found here. Those interested in following the events can also tune in through Catholic TV or listen on Vatican Radio.
The pope’s service is scheduled to begin Friday at about noon EDT. The ritual of the Way of the Cross or Stations of the Cross, meanwhile, is scheduled for 4 p.m. EDT Friday. The Stations of the Cross ritual takes place annually near Rome’s Colosseum in a tradition that dates back to the 18th century that involves carrying a huge cross lit by torches. At the end of the ritual, the pope gives a blessing. Last year tens of thousands of people joined Francis as he led the procession.
In last year’s Good Friday service, Father Raniero Cantalamessa, the Vatican’s official preacher, accused the international community of indifference toward the plight of persecuted Christians, according to Reuters.
“Christians are of course not the only victims of homicidal violence in the world, but we cannot ignore that in many countries they are the most frequently targeted victims,” Cantalamessa said, the day after Islamist militants killed 147 people at a Kenyan university, reportedly separating the Christians from the Muslims and killing the Christians.
During the Passion of the Lord service, the pope prays on the marble floor of St. Peter’s Basilica on the day Christians commemorate Jesus’ crucifixion. It is one of the few instances in which the pope listens to someone else preach.