Today being All Saints Day is a Holy Day of Obligation. Well actually for most in the United States it is a Holy Day of kinda-sorta-come-if-you-like-since-it-is-encouraged-obligation. Since Monday is too close to Sunday we wouldn’t want to impose on Catholics to actually have to go to Mass two days in a row. Pick up the cross daily unless it falls to close to a Sunday. Besides Sundays there are only six Holy Days of Obligation and the Ascension is almost always celebrated on Sunday so that leaves only five. Ash Wednesday which is not a solemnity manages to obtains crowds despite people having to work so I don’t understand the excuses used to do this. It wouldn’t exactly kill American Catholics to go to Mass an extra couple of days and the opportunity to receive Christ in the Eucharist isn’t exactly a hardship.
The Mass I went to today had a higher attendance then the normal daily Mass and our pastor took the opportunity to again correctly explain voting our faith after he explained the reason for today’s celebration. This day reminds me of being a Freshman at the end of the year and seeing the Seniors all dressed up and receiving their diplomas to graduate. At that time another three years seemed like forever but to see that people made it through to receive their reward was heartening. I look on the saints in the same light. Our pilgrimage on earth is a trial and seems to go on and on. But we can look at the examples of the saints, especially the ones that appeal to us, to guide us and to remember the purpose of the journey.
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Phil 3-14
It’s not a day of Obligation in the Canadian Church.
People go to Ash Wednesday mass because something different happens. The man in white gets to smudge dirt on my face. That’s worth checking out.
Well, in my parish, they don’t have the regular holy day Masses, so I had a choice of going at 6:30 or 7:15 AM or forgetting the whole thing. So, much as I hate the do-it-yourself holy day calendar of the U.S. Bishops Conference, I chose to go to the 5 PM Mass on Sunday and figure it both met my Sunday obligation and was a “vigil” for Nov. 1.
Clarification: My parish doesn’t have regular holy day Masses on those holy days that the U.S. Bishops dispense with the obligation. On those days they only have the regular daily Mass schedule. On honest-to-golly Holy Days of Obligation, the parish does have a holy day schedule.
I was happy to see that Cathedral Parish in St Augustine had their regular Holy Day schedule, including an evening Mass.