Liturgy of a Solemnity

When a church celebrates the feast of its patronal/titular saint I understand this is a Solemnity. Obviously the day of the celebration will change each year. It follows that on most years the Solemnity will fall on a weekday but sometimes a Sunday will be involved [if it’s Ordinary Time]. My query is, are there different forms depending on whether the Mass is celebrated on a weekday or a Sunday?

In other words, on Sundays there are 2 readings, a psalm and a Gospel reading. During the week there is only one reading, a psalm and a Gospel reading. So does the format of the Mass depend on the day it’s celebrated? :confused:

Sundays trump a Solemnity.

Some Solemnities have three readings.

The number of readings depend on whether it is a Solemnity (which includes all Sundays). In short, the Mass for a Solemnity should be comparable to a Sunday Mass.

Not all Sundays trump a Solemnity. For example, November 1st is the Solemnity of All Saints and that is still being celebrated. The Solemnity is trumped by a Sunday when it’s the Solemnity of an individual Saint or Holy person, unless of course, The Blessed Virgin Mary (Assumption and Immaculate Conception.) Or unless it’s the Parish feast day of that Saint, then the Parish may choose to celebrate the day of their Parish Saint.

I’m not sure this is correct. For example, where does the liturgy for, say, a virgin saint come from? Isn’t it from the Common of Virgins (which only has 1 reading and the Gospel)?

Also, I don’t think Solemnities are celebrated on Sundays in seasons such as Lent and Easter - are they?


But do Sundays trump Solemnities in Ordinary Time?

The Solemnities for, say, the Most Holy Trinity and The Body and Blood of Christ have 3 readings - but what about those from the ‘Commons’ which only have two.Of course, if these aren’t allowed on Sundays in OT then that answers my query.

I think :confused:

No, Solemnities are not celebrated in Lent or Easter (well, the Ascension is during Easter, so yes, that’s celebrated.) Lent, some.

There are Saints feast days during the week that are optional to do, not on Sundays however.

This year there were Solemnities during Lent on Thursday 19th March and on Wed. 25th March.

Do you mean Solemnities aren’t celebrated on Sundays during Lent?

Also, if your parish’s saint’s day (which is a Solemnity) falls during Lent how would you go about picking an alternative date to celebrate the feast day?

Yes, I corrected myself because I looked at the pages wrong. The feast days are optional to do, but you can’t do them on Sundays I would suppose, because our main focus is to be the Paschal mystery of Christ. Church feast days during Lent could be done on a Sunday, but they would probably need to be done at some other appropriate time, not during a Sunday Mass, but maybe some later time in the afternoon or evening.

You can do the solemnity on a weekday I would think.

If I’m wrong, someone please correct me. I wouldn’t want to give you false info. :slight_smile:

I wouldn’t dare correct you!:slight_smile: I haven’t been right about anything all year! :wink:

Anyway, I’ve just come across an answer all by accident. Looking at the Ordo for last week [Sunday 18th Oct] it reads:

“Parishes dedicated to St Luke are to celebrate his solemnity today in place of the Sunday celebration. All Patronal feasts replace the Sundays in Ordinary Time”

Mind you, I guess that raises another question: can there be differences from diocese to diocese, depending on how the Bishop wants to play it? My instinct is, no, on matters of liturgy which should be defined [somewhere] in the Church’s rulings and instructions.

Haha, I was thinking about that, because my Parish’s patronal Saint is St. Luke (Church is named Good Samaritan, and that passage was written by St. Luke) and we celebrated his feast day on Sunday during all Masses.

Anyways, as for a Bishop not wanting it, maybe he could require the church to maybe do it later like on Sunday afternoon or Sunday evening at a separate time? But, I don’t really think a Bishop would mind if the feast of a Saint is celebrated on a Sunday since you can technically celebrate it if it’s your church’s Parish feast.

So you knew all along and you were just teasing me! :cool: Well, that’s something for your list when you next go to Confession! :wink:

The Ordo is dictated by principles laid out in the General Instruction and in the calendar. From what I recall of the intro to the Liturgy of the Hours (should be consistent) Solemnities are celebrated except during certain seasons (Holy Week for sure, Sundays in Lent and Advent). Sunday itself is a Solemnity, but in ordinary time a lower ranking one.

On all solemnities, the readings, if none are Proper, are taken from the Common. They must be 3 readings (2+Gospel). ** The Common of Virgins has more than one reading aside form the Gospel which may be used. If however, one Common is lacking, readings could always be taken from another such as “Holy Men and Women”.

Local solemnities may not be celebrated on days 1-4 in the Table of Liturgical Days.

If a Solemnity does fall on one of these days, it is transferred to the next free day (i.e. a day not a Solemnity, Feast, Sunday, or other major days listed in the table like All Souls or Ash Wednesday) and celebrated then.

The Mass of a Solemnity must use the Creed and the Gloria. If the Patronal feast falls during a weekday and is celebrated on the same day ***, I suspect that unless a parish is in the habit of making it a big event, that externally it will be just like another weekday Mass but longer (because of the 3 readings, Gloria, Creed, etc.)

** The Lectionery does provide for two readings which was the option given in view of some of the concerns raised when it first came out. The option was that the Conference of Bishops could elect to use two readings (i.e. 1 +Gospel) instead of 3 for all days, including Sundays, if they judged it more expedient. [the lectionary before '65 had only 2]. I don’t know of any Conference which has done that - certainly none of the major Anglophone ones have.

*** In seasons like Ordinary Time, the Mass of the Patron may be celebrated on the Sunday, if judged pastorally helpful, even if it falls on a weekday.

Many thanks to all who have replied with helpful comments and advice. Particular thanks to CDNowak for the link to the GIRM and, especially, to AJV for a comprehensive answer which has filled in all the pieces of the jigsaw. :thumbsup:

Thank you and God Bless you all.

Apologies! One piece of the jigsaw missing!:eek:

If a Solemnity is held during Lent are the vestments white or purple?

The color for the Solemnity (I believe a few have Red as their proper color)

Actually, in the Latin Rite Ordinary Time, if a Solemnity falls on a Sunday, it trumps the Sunday. Case in point: November 1, 2009 falls on a Sunday. Rather than the 30th Sunday of Ordinary Time, we will be doing the readings for the Solemnity of All Saints. It has also happened when the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, the Nativity of John the Baptist, the Transfiguration, the Assumption and the Triumph of the Holy Cross have fallen on Sundays.

Should the Solemnity of the Immaculte Conception fall on a Sunday, it is trranslated to Monday, December 9th. The question was raised once about the Solemnity of Our Lady of Guadalupe and what would happen if December 12th were to fall on a Sunday. The USCCB said that OLG could not trump a Sunday in Advent. I do not know what the case in Mexico is since that is there patronal feast day.

For Holy Days of Obligation that fall on weekdays, all three readings are used.

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