Is the Immaculate Conception a Holy Day of Obligation this year?


**Is the Immaculate Conception (December 8) a Holy Day of Obligation this year for those of us in the United States?

Reason I ask is that it falls on a Saturday. And usually if the solemnity falls on a Saturday or Monday, the obligation becomes a “strong recommendation” instead. However, our calendar (that we got from our local parish) has the red OBLIGATORY on it. I guess I am confused.

I thought if it fell on a Saturday it wasn’t obligatory?

Not that I mind attending church an extra day…I love it. It does make a difference though as we have only one car and need to plan accordingly. And, also, I was just curious if this is a diocesan thing or throughout the United States!!!


According to my calendar it is. But I think that some areas on the US move dates differently than the majority of the states. Call your parish and check.


The IC is a HDO that is for the entire US.

The Sat/Mon rule does not apply to the IC (this is our patronal feast day in the US) or to Christmas. It is also not a movable/transferable feast day. The Holy See requires that in each country Christmas and one feast of Mary be observed on the actual date as HDOs (The US does this with the IC). --gives HDOs and other info, like when the Sat/Mon applies and the rules on the transfer of the date of the Ascension.


Socio_Momma is right. This is a key difference between the Assumption of Mary, also an HDO in my diocese, and the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. The second is of more importance in the U.S. due in particular to the patronage.

In Christ,


lol thats right! Not that I don’t already have “breakfast with santa”(at the parrish center) my son’s 1st birthday party(same place, phew) and my work chrismas party that day. The only mass I could make is 8 am. Oddly enough it seems to be the only one scheduled at my church.:confused:


**Oh thank you everyone!

I actually thought the only Holy Day that was ALWAYS obligatory was Christmas.

I sure hope I hit all the previous Saturday/Monday Immaculate Conceptions. :eek:

I really had no idea it was ALWAYS obligatory.

What other Holy Days are ALWAYS obligatory? :confused:


Your Diocose should be able to answer for your area…

This breaks it down

Holy Days of Obligation
On Sundays and other “Holy Days of Obligation,” Catholics are obliged to participate in the Mass and to refrain from unnecessary work and all spiritually-distracting activities. In addition to Sunday, the days to be observed as “Holy Days of Obligation” in the Diocese of Baton Rouge, in conformity with canons 1246-1247 of The Code of Canon Law and various specific decisions of the Holy See, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, and the Bishops of the State of Louisiana, are as follows: 1, the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God; 15, the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary; 1, the Solemnity of All Saints; 8, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, patroness of the USA; 25, the Solemnity of the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ (Christmas).There are three additional rules which apply:
*]Throughout the universal Church, when December 8, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, falls on the Second Sunday of Advent, the observance of the feast is transferred to Monday, December 9, but the obligation to attend Mass is dispensed. If December 8 falls on a Saturday or a Monday, however, it remains a day of obligation.
*]In the dioceses of the USA, whenever January 1, the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, or August 15, the Solemnity of the Assumption, or November 1, the Solemnity of All Saints, falls on a Saturday or on a Monday, the obligation to attend Mass is dispensed.
*]In the Metropolitan Province of New Orleans, which includes the Diocese of Baton Rouge, the Solemnity of the Ascension of Our Lord, which in some other places in the USA is celebrated on the Thursday of the Sixth Week of Easter, is celebrated on the Seventh Sunday of Easter.[/LIST]There is no obligation for the faithful to participate at Mass on Ash Wednesday and on Holy Thursday, although this is certainly highly recommended.


#3, the timing of the celebration of the Ascension varies by diocese, there are still some that observe it on the Thursday rather than the Sunday (not ours, more’s the pity)


The short rule of thumb is that ALL Holy Days of Obligation are always obligatory (hence the term ‘obligation’).

Just that for some of 'em the obligation is always transferred to the nearest Sunday, for some it’s occasionally transferred (ie if it falls on a Saturday or Monday). But you can’t assume (pardon the pun) that it’s always transferred if it does fall on a Saturday or Monday - for example Christmas.

Sadly, here in Australia there is only one HDO apart from Christmas (being the Assumption) that isn’t automatically transferred. And OUR patronal feast, Our Lady Help of Christians, isn’t an HDO in any sense :frowning:


:extrahappy: Yay! You made my day!


**The only HDOs we have here in Canada that aren’t transferred are Christmas Day and Mary, Mother of God(Jan 01):shrug:



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