Today is known as Spy Wednesday or Holy Wednesday. I just learned about this day this year. So what exactly is Spy Wednesday or Holy Wednesday? Well, this day has its roots in the Bible and mostly is commemorated by the Eastern Rite Churches (I will have to spend some time and an entry on this and Western Rite Churches to give them their due justice, but for now bear with me and research Eastern Rite Churches on your own if you cannot wait for me).
Today marks a day when Judas Iscariot looked for an opportunity to hand Jesus over to be crucified. It also marks the day when the woman came and anointed Jesus’ head and feet with extravagant, perfumed oils. (He later healed the woman of her sins, meaning He forgave her of all her sins.) I want to say that He also forgave Judas, but there’s no proof in any readings that I have found thus far that He did such a thing. I just don’t see how He couldn’t or wouldn’t especially since, later Judas felt terrible and hung himself. 😦 That just doesn’t seem right. Why would an all loving and forgiving God not forgive someone who was truly repentant like Judas Iscariot who was truly sorry for his wrong-doing?
Anyway, to get back on the subject at hand, there are many traditions that are associated with this “feast” day. Some of these traditions are what some Western Churches do on Holy Thursday (e.g., dimming — extinguishing — the candles on the altar slowly until all is dark and then a loud clanging noise can be heard to symbolize Jesus’ death).
There are still others who claim the Holy Triduum as we know it today has it all wrong and that today was really the Feast of the Last Supper and tomorrow is when Jesus died. 😐 Okay, I can see that because it wouldn’t make sense for us to say Jesus was in the tomb for three days, but the way one of my former pastors (and very good friend of mine) explained: we count using the Jewish system for counting days (from sundown to sundown). That makes sense, too.
At any rate, today is the “beginning” of the Triduum for some; for others, we will wait until tomorrow (“Holy Thursday”). 🙂