Why isn't Good Friday a Holy Day of Obligation


#1

Yes I realise there is no Mass. Still, as you know, we have the Good Friday Liturgy. Why isn’t that day obligatory?

To me, it seems that Good Friday is a bigger deal than the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, Mary Mother of God and the Assumption. It’s a bigger deal than the Ascension too, isn’t it? Perhaps the only two days that are more important are Easter and Christmas.

Just curious why it’s this way.


#2

You answered your own question. The obligation of which you speak-- Holy Day of Obligation-- is the obligation to assist at Mass. There is no Mass.


#3

[quote="1ke, post:2, topic:314955"]
You answered your own question. The obligation of which you speak-- Holy Day of Obligation-- is the obligation to assist at Mass. There is no Mass.

[/quote]

It's clear from the context of what I wrote that I was asking why isn't the Liturgy of Good Friday obligatory. It may not be Mass but it's still a Liturgy and if they wanted to they could make it obligatory.


#4

[quote="PazzoGrande, post:3, topic:314955"]
It's clear from the context of what I wrote that I was asking why isn't the Liturgy of Good Friday obligatory. It may not be Mass but it's still a Liturgy and if they wanted to they could make it obligatory.

[/quote]

I think this whole idea of going to church out of obligation is horrible! Shouldn't we go to church because we love God and wish to worship him by hearing Mass.......not because I am "obligated" to go? :shrug:


#5

[quote="UncleBill, post:4, topic:314955"]
I think this whole idea of going to church out of obligation is horrible! Shouldn't we go to church because we love God and wish to worship him by hearing Mass.......not because I am "obligated" to go? :shrug:

[/quote]

I think it's just a bad choice of words.

I'm guessing they're getting that word from the Latin and it doesn't have the same ring in modern English. It happens a lot in the Church -- a lot of words that are derived from Latin but come off the wrong way.

There's probably a more appropriate word for it. Might not be a bad idea if they changed it.


#6

[quote="PazzoGrande, post:3, topic:314955"]
It's clear from the context of what I wrote that I was asking why isn't the Liturgy of Good Friday obligatory. It may not be Mass but it's still a Liturgy and if they wanted to they could make it obligatory.

[/quote]

Good Friday liturgy subsists within the Triduum. It is really one liturgy from the Mass of the Lord's Supper to the Easter Vigil. The Triduum liturgies cannot be repeated, they may only be done once on the day.

So, on one level it is not really practical to attempt to have everyone obligated to attend when it is unlikely that the parish church can accommodate everyone at once, especially when people no longer receive time off work as they once did.

It is good to attend one or all of the liturgies during the Triduum, but the bishops have determined they will not to obligate people to do so.


#7

[quote="PazzoGrande, post:5, topic:314955"]
I think it's just a bad choice of words.

I'm guessing they're getting that word from the Latin and it doesn't have the same ring in modern English. It happens a lot in the Church -- a lot of words that are derived from Latin but come off the wrong way.

There's probably a more appropriate word for it. Might not be a bad idea if they changed it.

[/quote]

The idea of obligation is VERY clear in the Western Church. It even comes with penalties for not attending.

I don't believe it is a poor translation........but it is a legal mentality very prevalent in the Western Church.


#8

[quote="1ke, post:6, topic:314955"]
Good Friday liturgy subsists within the Triduum. It is really one liturgy from the Mass of the Lord's Supper to the Easter Vigil. The Triduum liturgies cannot be repeated, they may only be done once on the day.

So, on one level it is not really practical to attempt to have everyone obligated to attend when it is unlikely that the parish church can accommodate everyone at once, especially when people no longer receive time off work as they once did.

[/quote]

Yes but other Holy Days of Obligation may not fall on the weekend either. The Ascension, for example, is on a Thursday.

Furthermore my parish does the Good Friday Liturgy twice; once at noon and again at 6PM. See here
cathedralofourladyofpeace.com/PDF%20Bulletin/cathedralbulletin_040112.pdf


#9

[quote="UncleBill, post:7, topic:314955"]
The idea of obligation is VERY clear in the Western Church. It even comes with penalties for not attending.

I don't believe it is a poor translation........but it is a legal mentality very prevalent in the Western Church.

[/quote]

Yes but my point is that if they used a different word for it, we wouldn't feel like it's a drudging obligation. It's all in the framing. They could (and probably should) use a better word for it, even if it still has all the obligatory and penal trappings.

Personally I think their problem is just bad translating; it happens too often.


#10

[quote="1ke, post:6, topic:314955"]
Good Friday liturgy subsists within the Triduum. It is really one liturgy from the Mass of the Lord's Supper to the Easter Vigil. The Triduum liturgies cannot be repeated, they may only be done once on the day.QUOTE]
Well, unless you want to do one Triduum in the OF and one in the EF, you can do that... =p

[/quote]


#11

[quote="YoungTradCath, post:10, topic:314955"]

do that... =p

Not meaning to sidetrack, but I thought you can't do the EF on Good Friday, for some reason. I'm not up to date on that though; I know you're the expert on that issue :thumbsup:
[/quote]


#12

[quote="PazzoGrande, post:11, topic:314955"]

Not meaning to sidetrack, but I thought you can't do the EF on Good Friday, for some reason. I'm not up to date on that though; I know you're the expert on that issue :thumbsup:

[/quote]

Why not?

I don't know WHAT our FSSP parish would do if we couldn't do one of our own liturgies for Good Friday. :p


#13

Obligation

ob·li·ga·tion (bl-gshn)
n.
1. The act of binding oneself by a social, legal, or moral tie.

And to get into the Latin
latinwordlist.com/latin-word-for/latin-word-for-oblige-11234416.htm

The Latin word for Oblige is Commodo, Commodo is defined as: to make fit, adapt, please, oblige, serve. To view supplementary Latin Words that share homogeneous meanings with Commodo, please visit the: Commodo - Oblige Latin Word page.


#14

[quote="dshix, post:12, topic:314955"]
Why not?

I don't know WHAT our FSSP parish would do if we couldn't do one of our own liturgies for Good Friday. :p

[/quote]

I'm open to correction, but that's what it seems to mean here:

Art. 2. In Masses celebrated without the people, each Catholic priest of the Latin rite, whether secular or regular, may use the Roman Missal published by Bl. Pope John XXIII in 1962, or the Roman Missal promulgated by Pope Paul VI in 1970, and may do so on any day with the exception of the Easter Triduum. For such celebrations, with either one Missal or the other, the priest has no need for permission from the Apostolic See or from his Ordinary.

source:ewtn.com/library/papaldoc/b16summorumpontificum.htm

Again though, this is YoungTradCath's area of expertise. All I know is what I briefly read about before.


#15

Bottom line is that the bishops as a whole have decided not to make it obligatory. So you will need to ask them their reasoning.


#16

[quote="Marie5890, post:13, topic:314955"]
Obligation

ob·li·ga·tion (bl-gshn)
n.
1. The act of binding oneself by a social, legal, or moral tie.

[/quote]

Thanks for that but I'm not sure how that addresses the questions posed. Care to enlighten us with what point you're trying to share with us?


#17

Yes but of course CAF exists so we the faithful could share our knowledge. I asked here because perhaps another participant in this forum would know and share the knowledge. Can’t be bothering the hierarchy for every little question :wink:


#18

I didn't know everything that 1ke explained about the Triduum liturgy (singular), so thank you for helping me learn something today!

The point about not repeating the celebration of any of the celebrations within the Triduum means that there would be one - and only one - opportunity to go to church on any of those days. So if I were scheduled to work on Good Friday and the service were being held during my work hours, I would be obliged to miss either work or mass because there would be no other time for me to fulfill my obligation to The Lord. That is probably one of the many reasons the bishops cited as they determined whether any of the Triduum celebrations should be days of obligation. Of course, all we can do is speculate since we don't know for sure.

As for your point about the obligation, I agree that we should go to mass out of love for The Lord. The Church, in her motherly care for us, makes it an obligation because it is good for us to do. If you search the threads I am sure there are many that discuss what Holy Days of Obligation mean to us as Catholics.


#19

[quote="UncleBill, post:7, topic:314955"]
The idea of obligation is VERY clear in the Western Church. It even comes with penalties for not attending.

I don't believe it is a poor translation........but it is a legal mentality very prevalent in the Western Church.

[/quote]

It is, and it's a very good one. Going to Mass out of love of God is ideal and should be embraced by every Catholic. But not all Catholics are yet at that level of love for God, so the Church, knowing that without prayer no one can be saved, imposes the obligation so that if they don't get saved out of love for God, they will at hopefully least get there starting with the fear of hell. It is a minimum, just as imperfect contrition is sufficient for absolution, but perfect contrition is ideal.

Without the obligation, more will stop going to Mass; this is a given and more will be in sorrier states than they are now. The Church's imposing of an obligation is in conformity with its highest law, which is the salvation of souls.


#20

[quote="JoyfulRC, post:18, topic:314955"]

The point about not repeating the celebration of any of the celebrations within the Triduum means that there would be one - and only one - opportunity to go to church on any of those days.

[/quote]

But again I'm not actually sure that's true. Like I said, my parish does the Good Friday Liturgy twice.


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