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Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Cardinal Castrillon clarifies Holyday question

I have just received this quotation from the address of Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos to the Latin Mass Society:
I am aware that the response of the Pontifical Commission “Ecclesia Dei” with regard to the observance of Holy Days of obligation has caused a certain amount of disturbance in some circles. It should be noted that the dates of these Holy Days remain the same in both the Missal of 1962 and the Missal of 1970. When the Holy See has given the Episcopal Conference of a given country permission to move certain Holy Days to the following Sunday, this should be observed by all Catholics in that country. Nothing prevents the celebration of the Feast of the Ascension, for example, on the prior Thursday, but it should be clear that this is not a Mass of obligation and that the Mass of the Ascension should also be celebrated on the following Sunday. This is a sacrifice which I ask you to make with joy as a sign of your unity with the Catholic Church in your country.
That's fine. I certainly made sure to tell the people that our Ascension Thursday Mass was not of obligation. We did indeed celebrate the Ascension on the following Sunday in our three Masses in the Ordinary Form. The Cardinal's mention of "sacrifice" seems to indicate that he is saying that the one Mass celebrated in the extraordinary form should also be the Mass of the Ascension. That's certainly a sacrifice we can make. The integrity of the Liturgy, rather than a desire to avoid sacrifice, prompts me to suggest that the re-introduction of the Octaves for the relevant feasts would be an opportune solution.
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