Christians mark Good Friday in Jerusalem
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Christians mark Good Friday in Jerusalem

Thousands carry crosses down Via Dolorosa remembering Jesus's crucifixion; fearing riots, police restrict Temple Mount access

Serbian pilgrims carry crosses during Good Friday in Jerusalem on Friday, April 18, 2014, as Christians commemorated the crucifixion of Jesus. (photo credit: AP/Dusan Vranic)
Serbian pilgrims carry crosses during Good Friday in Jerusalem on Friday, April 18, 2014, as Christians commemorated the crucifixion of Jesus. (photo credit: AP/Dusan Vranic)

Christians in Israel commemorated the crucifixion of Jesus Christ in Good Friday prayers and processions through Jerusalem’s Old City on Friday.

Thousands of Christian pilgrims filled the cobblestone alleyways of the Old City on Friday along the Via Dolorosa, Latin for the “Way of Suffering.”

They carried wooden crosses and followed the 14 stations ending at the ancient Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Tradition says the church was built on the site where Jesus was crucified, buried and resurrected.

The Easter holiday and Jewish Passover coincide this year.

According to the Gospels, Jesus ate his last supper — some say a Passover meal — hours before he was betrayed. Christians believe Jesus was crucified on Good Friday and resurrected on Easter Sunday.

Israeli police meanwhile limited access to Jerusalem’s flashpoint Al-Aqsa mosque compound on the Temple Mount, fearing more unrest after days of clashes.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said men under the age of 50 were barred, but there were no restrictions on women.

Dozens of Palestinians were wounded in clashes with police at the site on Wednesday and Sunday after Jewish visitors were allowed onto the compound.

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