Is Good Friday a Holy Day of Obligation?

The Cross in the Woods in Indian River, Michigan. (Photo by Scott P. Richert)
The Cross in the Woods in Indian River, MI, is the world's largest crucifix. Completed in August 1959, it was declared a national shrine by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops on September 15, 2006. Scott P. Richert

On Good Friday, Catholics commemorate the crucifixion and death of Jesus Christ with a special service recalling His Passion. But is Good Friday a Holy Day of Obligation?

While all Roman Catholics are encouraged to attend the commemoration of Our Lord's Passion on Good Friday in order to prepare most fully for Christ's resurrection on Easter Sunday, Good Friday is not a Holy Day of Obligation. It is, however, a day of strict fasting and abstinence.

For the regulations on fasting and abstinence, see the article on Good Friday or What Are the Rules for Fasting and Abstinence in the Catholic Church?

For the date of Good Friday in this and future years, see When Is Good Friday?