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3 Apr, 2010 12:34

Pilgrims gather for Easter Holy Fire vigil in Jerusalem

Christians from across the globe have gathered in the Old City of Jerusalem to partake in the rituals which mark Holy Saturday, the day before Easter.

Holy Saturday is the final day of Holy Week that precedes Easter and the final day of Lent – a period of fasting and penance. This year it is celebrated on the same day by Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant believers.

The thousands of pilgrims who have gathered in Jerusalem on this day came to observe the centuries-old Holy Fire ritual, during which the Holy Fire is said to ignite spontaneously, which is then shared among the congregation.

Viewed by Christians as a miracle – the event happens yearly and takes place in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem.