Ever since the date of Epiphany was changed (about 40 years ago), I have felt the solemnity should be changed back to it’s traditional Jan. 6 date. Instead of the first Sunday in January, the date should never have been changed.
My reasons for this are several:
First, the twelve (12) days of Christmas extend from Christmas (Dec. 25) to Epiphany Jan. 6). An earlier or later date changes the tradional 12 days of Christmas.
Second, Epiphany was actually celebrated by Christians before Christmas and thus January 6 is just as important a date as Dec. 25. One would never think of changing Christmas to a Sunday, so why alter Epiphany’s date??
Third, many countries not only celebrate Epiphany as a Holyday, but actually a legal holiday. Many Europ-ean countries (France, Italy, Spain) celebrate this holiday with more importance than Christmas and it is a holy day of obligation as well. Some do not exchange their gifte until Jan. 6.
Lastly, I feel the Catholic church should consider returning the Feast to its original date. I also think i should be a holy day of obligation, replacing Jan. 1 (The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God). Mary, Mother of God could be celebrated one of two ways:
This feast can be changed and celebrated on the Sunday when Epiphany would have been celebrated. (Except if Jan. 1 falls on a Sunday, then it would be stay there.) Or keep it on Jan. 1 and not make it a holiday. However, I am leaning toward the first way. I am not saying that the Solemnity of Mary is not important, but Epiphany is a more trditional feast celebrated by Christians of all faiths. The Solemnity of Mary is Strictly a Catholic feast which was created in the calander rerform of 1969. It was formerly called the feast of the Circumcision.
I realize Jan. 6 could never be a legal holiday in the United States, but the Catholic church could recognize the feast with much greated importance by restoring it’s original date and making it a holy day of obligation.
Any comments or opinions on this matter?? Thank you.