Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Vatican changes dates for 2008 feasts of St. Joseph, Annunciation

By Cindy Wooden
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Because of conflicts in the Catholic Church's liturgical calendar, the Vatican has decided that in 2008 the dates of the feasts of St. Joseph and of the Annunciation of the Lord will be moved. Working a year and a half in advance to meet the needs of publishers of church calendars, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments published its notification on the 2008 changes in mid-July. In 2008, if the feast of St. Joseph were to be celebrated as usual on March 19, it would fall on the Wednesday of Holy Week and if the feast of the Annunciation of the Lord were to be celebrated March 25, it would fall on the Tuesday during the octave of Easter. While the two feasts are among the 14 solemnities marked with special care in the Catholic Church, they do not take precedence over the commemoration of Christ's suffering, death and resurrection. Therefore, the congregation said, in 2008 the feast of St. Joseph will be celebrated March 15, the day before Palm Sunday, and the feast of the Annunciation will be celebrated March 31, the Monday after the second Sunday of Easter, which also is Divine Mercy Sunday.