It goes without saying that we live in strange times when our national episcopal conference regularly places us in the situation where a Catholic has to google whether a venerable and customary holy day of obligation is indeed actually a day of obligation in that particular year, when it falls on a Monday or Saturday, or when a Thursday day is transferred to Sunday day to celebrate Ascension ThursdaySunday and when Epiphany has no relation to January 6.
So, as a service to readers of this blog, I can safely inform you that our episcopal conference has decreed that Catholics are not obligated to assist at Mass on Saturday, January 1, 2011, which under the modernized Calendar is the Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God. I don't think this makes the day or feast less holy. But perhaps it is a sign that we cannot be bothered to go to Mass Two. Days. In. A. Row.
I urge Catholics to assist at Mass anyway, for what it's worth, preferably at the traditional Mass following the traditional Calendar of our Church, which celebrates, on the Octave of Christmas, the Circumcision of Our Lord Jesus Christ. This feast marks the first time Christ shed His blood for the remission of our sins, even in His infancy. Contemplate that this shedding of blood would have been enough to redeem the whole world, apart from the immolation on the Cross.
In each form, the Gospel is one of the shortest of the year-- the recounting of the circumcision and naming of Jesus.
Mass at St. Francis de Sales Oratory that day-- 8am and 10am.