Whether you like to know the interesting facts about Wednesday or not, you’ll find plenty of them here. From the story behind the weathervane, to the origins of the Ash Wednesday tradition, here’s everything you need to know about the day of the week.
Known as “Hump Day” in the US, “the third day” in the Slavic languages and “the middle” in the Chinese language, Wednesday is the unofficial midpoint between the work week and weekend. For office workers, it is a day to split the work week.
While Wednesday may not be everyone’s favorite day of the week, it certainly has some interesting facts. You might be surprised to learn that a large percentage of the stock market’s biggest winners over the past several years have been on Wednesdays. In fact, since 1923 Wednesday has been the biggest winner in the stock market, remitting 2,179% of its total revenues!
During the Holy Week leading up to Easter, many Catholics mark the occasion with a tenebrae service, a liturgy which focuses on the death of Jesus. It is also a time for Christians to reflect on the meaning of Good Friday and how it connects to their personal lives. Those who are observant will notice that many churches and buildings are lit up in red to symbolically show their support.
Spy Wednesday, however, is a bit less celebrated than its more famous cousin. In fact, if you’re looking for an alternative, try Red Wednesday, an initiative of Aid to the Church in Need. In this rite of passage, buildings all over the globe light up in red to show support for the Church.
Traditionally, Ash Wednesday is a day of fasting, prayer, and repentance for Christians. It marks the beginning of Lent, a period of penance and spiritual discipline that precedes Easter.
Christians give up foods and activities they enjoy during Lent, such as chocolate, alcohol, and sweets. They also refrain from watching movies and participating in merry-making activities.
On Ash Wednesday, clergymen mark the foreheads of worshipers with ashes. These ashes are believed to remind Christians of their mortality and need for forgiveness. The priest usually shares a sermon of penitential nature. The congregation is then encouraged to confess their sins, silently.
In some churches, observing Ash Wednesday is optional. However, in Catholic churches, fasting is an important aspect of the Lent season. Catholics are expected to abstain from meat, including chicken, on Ash Wednesday and Fridays during Lent. They are also expected to abstain from milk.