Christians believe Jesus was mocked publicly and crucified on a solemn Friday more than two thousand years ago. Today, the calamitous day is celebrated as Good Friday.
But what’s so good about that?
One answer is that at the time of Jesus’ crucifixion, “good” may have referred to “holy” in Old English, a linguistic theory supported by many language experts.
According to Slate, the Oxford English Dictionary notes the Wednesday before Easter was once called “Good Wednesday.” Today, it’s more commonly known as Holy Wednesday.
And Anatoly Liberman, a University of Minnesota professor who studies the origins of English words, told Slate if we consider the alternative names for Good Friday, such as “Sacred Friday” (romance languages) or “Passion Friday” (Russian), this theory makes a lot of sense.
Another possible reason for its moniker — a theory supported by both linguists and historical evidence — refers to the holiday’s ties to Easter Sunday, which celebrates the resurrection of Christ.
Because Jesus couldn’t have been resurrected without dying, the day of his death is, in a sense, “good.”
“That terrible Friday has been called Good Friday because it led to the Resurrection of Jesus and his victory over death and sin and the celebration of Easter, the very pinnacle of Christian celebrations,” the Huffington Post reported.
A third answer, some believe, is that the “good” in Good Friday was derived from "God” or “God’s Friday” — the way the term “goodbye” comes from a contraction of the phrase “God Be With You.”
Still, not everyone refers to this day as Good Friday. For example,
The Catholic Encyclopedia mentions that, in the Greek Church, the holiday is known as "the Holy and Great Friday." In German, it's referred to as "Sorrowful Friday."
And as aforementioned, “Sacred Friday” and “Passion Friday” are also used.
In addition, because the holiday is also commemorated with a long fast, Good Friday was also referred to as “Long Friday” by the Anglo-Saxons.
If you still haven't bounced back from this weekend's springing forward, here's some good news: Monday is National Napping Day.
According to Days of the Year, the unofficial sleeping holiday gives anyone who is still feeling the effects of losing an hour of sleep Sunday morning the opportunity to get some quick shut-eye during a catnap.
Dr. William Anthony, a Boston University professor, came up with National Napping Day in 1999, according to Huffington Post.
He wanted to encourage people to make naps a part of everyone’s lives to help them be healthy and productive.
Anthony said they chose the Monday after daylight saving time begins because people were already in nap mode after losing that hour of sleep, Shape reported.
March 12 also marks National Girl Scout Day and National Plant a Flower Day, according to National Day Calendar.
The shamrock is the most iconic symbol of St. Patrick’s Day, but what do you really know about the three-leafed plant you’ll probably see adorned on all things green on March 17?
What is the shamrock?
Merriam-Webster defines a shamrock as “a small plant with three leaves on each stem that is the national symbol of Ireland”—not to be confused with the lucky four-leaf clover.
The yellow-flowered Old World clover, according to the dictionary, is often regarded as the “true” shamrock.
History of the shamrock
Its history dates back to ancient Ireland when the shamrock, also called the “seamroy” by the Celts, represented the rebirth of spring.
During the 1798 Irish Rebellion when the English began to conquer Irish land and make laws against their language and practice of Catholicism, wearing the shamrock became a symbol of Irish nationalism, according to History.com.
But contrary to popular belief, Ireland’s national symbol isn’t the shamrock. It’s actually the harp, which you’ll find on Irish coins, state seals and the presidential flag.
And while green is the color most associated with Ireland today—arguably due to both the shamrock and Ireland’s lush nature—the national color of origin was actually a shade of blue used by the Order of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland.
Why is the shamrock linked to St. Patrick’s Day?
According to St. Patrick's Day lore, St. Patrick used the leaves of a shamrock as a metaphor for the holy trinity. Each leaf represented either the Father, the Son or the Holy Spirit.
Many representations of St. Patrick depict the patron saint with shamrocks tied to his robes, the Sun reported.
Others show him in pictures alongside shamrocks.
According to academic folklorist Jack Santino, some pictures of St. Patrick even present him driving the snakes out of Ireland—a popular, debunked legend associated with the Christian figure—with a cross in one hand and a spring of shamrocks in the other.
LaNelle and Perry Holland’s love story begins with a blind date on a winter evening in 1968.
A mutual friend invited LaNelle to join him in a gathering at Perry’s house in Kennesaw, Georgia. By the time LaNelle arrived, the roads were slick with ice. It was too dangerous to drive anywhere.
The Hollands’ first date never left a living room couch.
Instantly smitten, LaNelle and Perry stayed up through the night talking about music, politics, sports (they were both passionate Georgia Tech football fans).
Just a few days later, Perry proposed.
Sometimes people wait years, even decades, to find The One. For this lucky couple now in their early 70s, they were struck by Cupid’s arrow on a quiet winter evening and then tied the knot after knowing each other just two weeks.
What they didn’t know back in 1968 is how they would grow together and develop a passion for teaching and caring for children in their community. They would speak up, even march for social justice.
According to KSTU, Natalie Richard was convinced her daughter had misunderstood Kanesville Elementary School’s rule when she came home saying that she could not refuse if a boy asked her to dance. However, after speaking with her daughter’s teacher, Richard realized the sixth-grade girls had in fact been told they couldn’t say “no.”
“The teacher said she can’t. She has to say yes. She has to accept, and I said, ‘Excuse me?’” Richard recalled of hearing the news, after which she took the issue up with the principal. “He basically just said they’ve had this dance set up this way for a long time, and they’ve never had any concern before.”
A spokesperson for Weber School District confirmed the rule’s existence but explained that it’s intended to teach the students to be inclusive.
“Please be respectful, be polite. We want to promote kindness, and so we want you to say yes when someone asks you to dance,” Lane Findlay said, adding that the students will fill out cards before the voluntary dance with the names of five people they want to dance with and can speak up if they feel uncomfortable with anyone who has requested to dance with them. “If there is an issue, if there’s students that are uncomfortable or have a problem with another student, I mean, that’s certainly something that can be addressed with that student and parents.”
Richard, however, believes rejection is a learning experience and a part of life. She said there are other ways to educate the children on being tolerant and accepting that don’t include forcing girls into unwanted dances with boys.
“[The rule] sends a bad message to girls that girls have to say ‘yes’; [it] sends a bad message to boys that girls can’t say ‘no,'” she said. “Psychologically, my daughter keeps coming to me and saying, ‘I can’t say “no” to a boy.’ That’s the message kids are getting.”
Mardi Gras marks the last blowout before Lent season begins. Take a look at the parades that bring in the fun before the Holy season begins.
From flowers to a gift to dinner out, Valentine's Day can be an expensive holiday.
To help you save some money, these restaurants are offering some cheap or free Valentine's Day meals.
If you're without a significant other this Valentine's Day – or even if you've found a new sweetie and want to score some free wings – participating Hooters locations will help you shred your ex. Shred online and print a coupon to take to the restaurant or bring in a photo of your former love and let Hooters shred it. In return, you can buy 10 boneless wings and get 10 free – and maybe a bit of catharsis. Learn more at www.hooters.com.
Fogo de Chão
If you make a reservation and dine at a participating Fogo's location anytime from Feb. 10 through Feb. 17, you'll be able to save on a return visit. You'll receive a complimentary churrasco dining card that you can use next time you're in the restaurant. (As is usually the case, "certain restrictions apply.") Learn more at http://fogodechao.com.
Qdoba Mexican Eats
Take advantage of the restaurant's "Qdoba for a Kiss" promotion, and you'll be able to buy one entrée and get one free at participating restaurants on Feb. 14. Bring your significant other to kiss, smooch a photo of your favorite celebrity on your cellphone or even pucker up to a burrito – anything goes!
On top of that sweet deal, from Feb. 6-28, if you share a kissing photo on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram with the hashtag #QdobaForAKiss, Qdoba will donate $1 to No Kid Hungry. For more information, visit www.qdoba.com.
Outback Steakhouse offers a Valentine's Day meal for two at participating restaurants from Feb. 12-16. For a special price (which varies by location), a couple can share a Bloomin' Onion, choose two entrees (center cut sirloin, grilled salmon or Alice Springs chicken), two sides, two salads and cheesecake for dessert. Learn more at www.outback.com.
California Pizza Kitchen
Enjoy a "Sweet Deal for Two" at participating California Pizza Kitchen locations from Feb. 14 to 18, and you'll get an appetizer, two entrees and a dessert from their special menu for $35. Choose from among three appetizers, 10 entrees or four desserts. As a further incentive, if you tag your sweetie or best friend in California Pizza Kitchen's Facebook post with the hashtag #CPKgiveaway, you'll be entered to win a $100 gift card. Learn more at www.cpk.com.
Waffle House probably isn't the restaurant you think of when you're picturing a candlelit dinner with cloth napkins and tablecloths, but that's just what they're doing on Valentine's Day. You can enjoy alcohol-free champagne as the lights are dimmed, and choose from breakfast favorites or special offerings like ribeye and eggs. Many locations are participating, so check for your location's phone number and contact person for reservations. Learn more at ww.wafflehouse.com.
Fast food icon White Castle once again will offer its romantic Valentine’s Day package for those in love, but on a budget.
White Castle is now accepting reservations for its annual Valentine’s Day Dinner and for the first time, the chain is using OpenTable.com, or the reservation app, to allow diners to secure their spot for the traditional dinner with a twist, Cincinnati.com reported.
This year, like in years past, White Castle will offer its original slider and veggie slider. To throw love into the meal, it’s also serving up a chocolate-covered strawberry smoothie, a combination of strawberries and vanilla yogurt that is topped with Ghirardelli chocolate sauce. It will also decorate the locations in red and pink balloons, throw tablecloths on the tables and give menus to its guests, Delish reported.
A South Carolina father watched his baby girl’s birth while he was in handcuffs.
The car was traveling at more than 90 miles per hour when several law enforcement officers started chasing Alewine.
He just kept going until officers eventually boxed him in and forced him to pull over.
They had Alewine in handcuffs when his little girl, Anastasia, came out with one push.
"I'm sitting there, watching her born on the hood of the car, fireworks going off in the background, because it's 1 in the morning on New Year's and then they let me out of handcuffs and all the cops started clapping and congratulating us," Alewine recalled.
The baby was born healthy, even though the mother went through a high-risk pregnancy.
The family said they're thankful for the first responders' help.
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