Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Give Us Back Our Holy Days!

In my last parish the days to come were know as "The Time Father Erik Complains About the Bishop Moving the Solemnity of the Ascension to Sunday." I suppose that it could also be called Whiningtide. In our diocese, the celebration of this feast was moved 14 years ago. This was during my first year as a priest and so I have never been able to celebrate this feast on its proper day in the Latin Rite. (I have snuck down to the Maronite parish a couple of times.) I am beginning to feel like the Emperor Augustus. It is said that after the disastrous loss of three legions in Teutoburg Forest, for years August would periodically cry out, "Quintctili Vare, legiones redde! (Quinctilius Varus, give me back my Legions!)" Well, here I am crying out, "GIVE ME BACK MY HOLY DAYS!" And I will keep doing so until I get them back or I am dead, whichever comes first.
Why is it important? Primarily for a couple of reasons. First, religion is being pushed more and more to the periphery of society. The Faith is seen by many as a 'Sunday Thing'. Moving this important feast day only serves to underscore this belief. (And if things keep going this way, soon Sunday itself will be seen as optional. Oops it already is by many. The effective view of many is, "Keep holy the Sabbath Day, except when I want to go skiing, or camping, or the kids have a soccer tournament.) Second, the Ascension is a solemnity that celebrates an historical event. This event took place on a Thursday.
And so, dear readers, I ask that you join your prayers to mine that this, and other, holy days be restored to their proper days and obligatory nature.
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