Saturday Vigil Mass-November 1st


If you go to a Saturday Vigil Mass for Sunday on November 1st, will it be an All Saints Day Mass or a Vigil Mass for All Souls?


It will be the Mass of the Sunday–in this case, All Souls.


Really? I thought the rule was that if two equally-ranked days conflict that you go with the one that it actually is. So for instance, All Souls never has Vespers I, even though it ranks as a solemnity, because its Vespers I would always be superseded Vespers II for All Saints.


I’m confused myself. Is Nov 1 even a Holy Day of Obligation, being a Saturday? If not, why a Friday vespere? Some churches probably won’t even have a Mass then or Sat morning.


**Solemnity of All Saints **in the morning.
Sunday (All Souls) in the evening.


There is no such thing as a vigil Mass for the Feast of All Souls. The Commemoration of the Faithful Departed is **only **observed on November 2, even if it falls on a Sunday.

Because All Saints is a solemnity, all Masses offered on November 1 would logically be that of All Saints. Even if the obligation is abrogated, the feast remains a solemnity. (Note that All Souls is not a solemnity—it is a celebration in a class of its own.) However, I think there is wiggle room in the GIRM for the (arch)bishop to permit other liturgies to be celebrated on that Saturday evening. Therefore, what will actually happen on the evening of November 1 this year may vary widely between (arch)dioceses.

Sources: Zenit (article title is misleading; scroll to the bottom), (citing the GIRM “and other authoritative books”), my pastor and my own experience as a sacristan

My parish chose to simply cancel all Saturday evening Masses on November 1 this year. :ehh: EDIT: Well, actually, to be fair and more charitable, we moved them to the morning and then added a third, also in the morning. The All Saints obligation holds here (I am in France, where there is no abrogation or transfer [that I know of] for any HDO).


It’s a confusing intersection of days. Here’s what the USCCB says about it. I’m not sure I understand all of the rationale… Go to the last page at the link.



This might sound a bit strange at first, but bear with me. To understand this, we first forget about the fact that these 2 days happen on Saturday/Sunday this year—the reason is that both of those days outrank the Sunday of Ordinary Time.

In any year (again, regardless of the days of the week), All Saints Day begins in the evening of October 31, with First Vespers of All Saints. All Saints Day continues through Evening Prayer II of All Saints on the evening of November 1.

All Souls Day does not begin the evening-before. It is only celebrated on the actual calendar day of Nov. 2. To illustrate this, there is no Evening Prayer I of All Souls.

The proper observance (as a result of that) is that the Masses on the evening of Nov. 1 should always be that of All Saints Day.

However because there has developed the pastoral practice of observing All Saints the evening before and then the next day, All Souls the evening before (in other words, on the evening of Nov. 1, the All Souls Day Mass), this practice can continue this year. This is a matter of custom. There is a custom (going back more than 30 years) of having All Souls on the evening of Nov 1 and this is not (strictly speaking) forbidden by the law.

Conclusion: *
**The evening of Nov. 1 “should” be All Saints Day. The legitimate custom is to celebrate All Souls on the evening of Nov. 1. This custom may be maintained, but is not required. **

Therefore, either option of celebrating All Saints or All Souls on the evening of Nov. 1 are legitimate options.

This is especially true if, for pastoral and practical reasons, the faithful may have the opportunity to celebrate All Saints on the evening of Oct. 31, then All Souls the evening of Nov. 1. In other words: “give the parish the opportunity to celebrate both days by providing an evening Mass for each day for those who need/want it.”

To illustrate the that this is legitimate custom: when Nov 1 & 2 do not fall on a weekend, most parishes do in-fact have evening-before Masses for each day, one for All Saints, one for All Souls. That is the custom in the United States. It might not be the custom in other places.

The Committee says that Saturday evening “should” be All Souls Day. What is not said is that this is for pastoral reasons—because people are accustomed to that, and are expecting it (and also because it presumes that they’ve had the opportunity for an evening Mass of All Saints on Oct. 31). That’s why we see 2 different answers from the USCCB Committee and the Zenit article. The Zenit article is addressing the norms of the calendar, while the Committee is addressing the pastoral considerations that apply in the United States, and the U.S. custom.

  • this “conclusion” is taking the explanation of the Committee on Divine Worship and simply re-phrasing it.


Thanks Dan. Second to last sentence in the last paragraph I think sums it up.

As a reminder, All Saints Day is not a holy day of obligation this year, owing to the 1992 decision of the USCCB abrogating the precept to attend Mass when November 1 falls on a Saturday or Monday



Ideally, you should go on both days. Based on what I’ve been told, even if a holy day of obligation falls on a Saturday, you should still go, in addition to attending Sunday Mass.


You may most certainly attend Mass for both days; however, you don’t get to make the rules for others. Again: "As a reminder, All Saints Day is not a holy day of obligation this year, owing to the 1992 decision of the USCCB abrogating the precept to attend Mass when November 1 falls on a Saturday or Monday. "


I certainly do not claim to make the rules for others; I’m a mere follower of the Church’s rules. I respect the USCCB’s decision, but I still hope to make it to Mass on that day. I am, however, curious as to why the USCCB made that decision, when there’re only so many holy days of obligation during the year.


And in the EF calendar,

Saturday (1st) would be All-Saints Day (not obligatory under the new rules)
Sunday (2nd) would be the 21st Sunday after Pentecost (obligatory)
Monday (3rd) is All-Souls Day, transferred from Sunday (not obligatory but for some reason, All-Souls Day is usually well-attended)

Vespere (or Vigil as the OP calls it) Masses are generally not a problem since they’re very rare in the EF.


I was thinking about driving up to a monastery to celebrate All Saints Day Mass but now I don’t think I have to if local parishes are going to celebrate it at the Sunday Vigil.

For daily Mass goers, when some solemnities fall on non-Sundays, the Mass can be quite “routine”. St. Joseph’s feast day is treated like any other regular day. I’ve been to Mass on feast days of St. Peter and Paul and the second reading was skipped. Don’t get me started on the Feast of the Annunciation. We have better Masses for Labor Day, Fourth of July, Memorial Day and Thanksgiving and these days aren’t solemnities.


There is a practical reason for than in that many have those other days off of work. If you are going to an early morning Mass or going during lunch you don’t have extra time just because it is a solemnity. (I wish but am glad to go to Mass even if it is short and glad I can still go before Mass we don’t skip the second reading but without singing parts it goes fast enough so I can still make it to Mass)
I will be interested to see what we do in our Parish. Would we do “All Souls” the evening before just because it is on Sunday? I know we didn’t do that when All Saints is on another day We have an evening Mass for that.

BUT no matter what your Church celebrates on Saturday evening the Sunday obligation is met.


At the time, the bishops’ discussion focused on not burdening parents and family members who had to care for small children and the elderly, by requiring them to attend Mass two days in a row. Since the US has more holy days (six) than most other countries, it was felt that concessions could be made for three of the six days (All Saints, Assumption, and Mary, Holy Mother of God) if they fell on Saturday or Monday. This was not done for Christmas and Immaculate Conception–our national patroness–and Ascension, which always falls on a Thursday. A few years later, bishops in each province were given to option to decide whether to celebrate Ascension on Thursday or Sunday. Most chose the latter. :shrug:


:ehh: I thought the Immaculate Conception followed the same rule.


The Immaculate Conception is always a holy day of obligation, even if it falls on a Saturday or Monday.

See :

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 precept to attend Mass is abrogated.

It does not include either of the December solemnities: Immaculate Conception and Christmas.


No, you’re thinking of when it falls on a Sunday, as it did last year. Then the feast is transferred to the next day (but not in the EF), but not the obligation. So the irony is that if our patronal feast falls on a Sunday, we are not obligated to attend Mass on the feast that year. :whacky:


Well, Saturdays are usually reserved for Baptisms and Weddings, and Mondays people have work, which may make scheduling a bit difficult. Hawaii, although part of the United States, interestingly follows Oceania’s Holy Days of Obligation, and actually only has 2 days per year.

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