(Roto Reuters) The Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales has been planning for some time to move all Holy Days of Obligation to Sunday.
"This is something that the bishops have actively been considering since 1996," said secretary of department for Christian Life & Worship Catholic Bishops’ Conference England and Wales Fr Allen Morris.
"The circumstances of modern life in England and Wales has made it impossible for a large proportion of the Catholic community to attend Holy Days. And these three Holy Days are very important mysteries of our faith and it is important that the whole community should be able to attend."
"In fact once we decided on this course of action we soon realized that we should just go ahead and make the next step. To ensure that all Catholic’s can participate in these important mysteries of faith and are do not have any occasion to miss Mass because of work/entertainment scheduling we have decided to not only transfer Holy Days of Obligation that do not occur on Sunday to Sunday, but will also move and combine all 52 Sundays to one day a year."
"By only having one day of Holy Obligation a year we ensure that all Catholic can both attend and fully participate. If Catholics can’t be expected to attend one extra Mass a couple times of year can we really expect them to keep coming each and every Sunday? The laity really can’t be expected in this busy world to take time out for worship God. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind and strength is fine and all of that, at least until it comes to scheduling conflicts."
There is still a debate going on with the Bishop’s conference as to what to call this annual Mass and which Sunday to schedule it for. Suggestions of ‘Chriseastercost’" or "Pentemaster" have been put forward, but are not inclusive of all feasts. For the time being Annual Unified Feast Day is what is being used. The day to celebrate the AUFD is being carefully chosen to pick a day where people are least likely to have sports activities/vacations and other such conflicts that might prevent them from attending. The liturgy for the AUFD will include Christmas Carols and imposition of ashes, which will be promptly washed off by aspersion during the Easter promises. There is some consideration to have one makeup day for people unable to attend the AUFD, but this idea was tabled since someone might attend both by mistake and exceed their annual Mass requirement.
A statement from the bishops added: "We have responded to requests from Diocesan Councils of Priests and many others, deeply concerned at the diminishing observance of these days. As evidenced by the plummeting attendance of Mass in England and Wales it is obvious we are on the right track by not demanding or expecting anything of parishioners."
This is obviously one of my parody stories, but some of the paragraphs, or parts of, are from this article on The Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales decision to move most Holy Days of Obligation to Sundays. [Via Orthometer]