In the unique liturgical tradition of Milan's church, the Fridays of Lent – as is the case for Good Friday – are aliturgical days, on which mass is not celebrated and the Eucharist is not distributed. This uncommon observance, in which Ambrosian liturgical customs resemble eastern ones, is a sign of a more intimate participation in the Mystery of the Passion of the Christ and of a heightened anticipation of Sunday's mass.
Alongside the community celebration of the Liturgy of the Hours and the extended listening of the Word of God, the adoration of the Reliquary of the True Cross and the devotional practices of the Stations of the Cross are also performed.
The first Friday of Lent and Good Friday are days of fasting. In addition to abstinence from meat, all adults up to the age of 60 are required to fast, while all those over the age of 14 are required to abstain from eating meat.
SCHEDULE OF CELEBRATIONS IN THE DUOMO
- 7 am Stations of the Cross
- 8 am Morning and Mid-day prayer
- 11 am Liturgy of the Word
- 12:45 pm Stations of the Cross
- 1:10 pm Liturgy of the Word (in Santa Maria Annunciata)
- 4 pm Exhibition of the Reliquary of the True Cross for personal worship
- 5:30 pm Vespers and Lectio from the Book of Lamentations Blessing with the Reliquary of the True Cross