17/3/13 – St Patrick’s Day is on Monday

Stained glass window of St PatrickIt’s not a mistake.  St Patrick’s Day, for this year at least, is on Monday 18 March.  I hate to disappoint those who hope that Sunday Masses will focus on the patron saint of the Emerald Isle, but that’s the way it goes.

The General Norms for the Liturgical Year and the Calendar, written after the Second Vatican Council to direct the reforms made to the Church’s liturgical seasons and feasts, begins with the following:

Christ’s saving work is celebrated in sacred memory by the Church on fixed days throughout the year. Each week on the day called the Lord’s Day the Church commemorates the Lord’s resurrection. Once a year at Easter the Church honours this resurrection and passion with the utmost solemnity. In fact through the yearly cycle the Church unfolds the entire mystery of Christ and keeps the anniversaries of the saints.  (article 1)

Our unfolding of “the entire mystery of Christ” is central to our liturgical life and is of upmost importance.  The General Norms include a table of liturgical days in order of precedence.  The Sundays of Advent, Lent and Easter rank among the days of highest importance, following the Easter Triduum, Christmas, the Epiphany, Ascension and Pentecost.

Consequently, when the Church in each country prepares its liturgical calendar, it has to make appropriate determinations when solemnities and feast days fall on Sundays during the Christmas, Advent, Lent and Easter seasons.  As St Patrick’s Day enjoys in Australia the highest rank for a liturgy feast – solemnity – it is transferred to the following Monday whenever it falls on a Sunday during Lent.  The same happens with the solemnity of St Joseph.  As 25 March falls during Holy Week this year, the solemnity of the Annunciation has been transferred to the first day after the conclusion of Holy Week and the Easter Octave, namely Monday 8 April.

Don’t fear though, all will be back to normal next year.  I’m sure there will also be plenty of people who’ll use this year’s circumstances as a good excuse for two days of celebration, rather than one!

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

3/10/10 – The Feast of Blessed Mary MacKillop

Mary MacKillopIn two weeks’ time, the Catholic Church will celebrate the canonisation of six people, including Blessed Mary MacKillop.

To mark the Canonisation of Blessed Mary MacKillop as Australia’s first saint, the Catholic Church throughout Australia will celebrate the Feast of Blessed Mary on the day of her canonisation, Sunday 17 October.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish will join parishes across the country in giving thanks to God for the gift of Mary MacKillop and the recognition of her sainthood. This is a significant occasion for our country and for the Church throughout the world.

CELEBRATIONS FOR THE FEAST OF BLESSED MARY MACKILLOP

All Masses on Sunday 17 October (including the Vigil Mass on Saturday evening) will celebrate the feast of Blessed Mary MacKillop.

Procession and Principal Mass
Sunday 8:30 am
Parishioners and visitors are invited to join us in a procession through the church and school grounds in honour of Blessed Mary, prior to the celebration of Mass. The procession will commence in the front driveway outside the Parish Centre.

9:00 am
The principal Mass of the Feast will be celebrated in the church.

We invite everyone to join us and celebrate this historic occasion.

Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons