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Pentecost is a holiday of Christianity, which commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles, fifty days after the resurrection of Jesus Christ at Easter, and ten days after the Ascension. It is also known in English as Whitsun (Whitsunday), because of the white robes worn this day by those newly baptized. The word was already familiar in Old English, as Hwita Sunnandćg.

The name comes from the Greek word Pentékosté, meaning "fiftieth", and originally referred to Shavuot, celebrated after seven full weeks, on the fiftieth day after Passover (the second day of Passover, on the 16th of Nisan, is the first day of counting the Omer). The Hebrew festival was originally connected with celebrating the first-fruits of the spring grain harvest, but the Christian festival lost those associations to the new association with the descent of the Holy Spirit.

"Pentecostal" Christian churches, which are so named because they emphasize the Holy Spirit in each individual, celebrate Pentecost as the anniversary of the disciples' being filled with the Spirit, as described in the New Testament in Acts, 2. Most Christians recognize this event as the birth of the Church.

The next day is celebrated as Whitmonday in England, Wales, Ireland, Iceland, Sweden, The Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. The week beginning on Whitsunday (especially the first three days) is called Whitsuntide.

When is Pentecost?

Western Christianity

Eastern Christianity

See also : Wave offerings