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Holy Days of Obligation 2020 & 2021

In addition to every Sunday of the year, the Lord’s Day, which we keep holy in accordance with the Third Commandment, the following dates are Holy Days of Obligation for 2020.

Holy Days of Obligation
The Sabbath Every Sunday
"Thou shall keep the Sabbath holy."- The Third Commandment - Gives thanks and praise to God for his creative, redeeming, and sanctifying work through the celebration of the Eucharist.
Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God Wednesday, January 1, 2021
Honors the Blessed Virgin Mary as the Theotokos, "the God-bearer," who brings the Son of God into the world.
Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord Thursday, May 13, 2021
Celebrates the return of the Lord Jesus to heaven 40 days after his resurrection from the dead, from where he rules and continues to intercede for us, especially through his Holy Spirit
Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Saturday, August 15, 2020
Because the solemnity falls on a Saturday (the eve of the Sabbath), there is no obligation to observe this holy day this year.
Celebrates that Mary is assumed body and soul into the glory of heaven by God at the moment of her death.  Just as she was preserved from all stain of sin throughout her life (even from its very first moment--the Immaculate Conception), her body is now preserved from its natural corruption (an effect of sin) at the end of her earthly life.
Solemnity of All Saints Sunday, November 1, 2020
Celebrates the memory of all those holy men and women who lived a blessed life on earth and are now in communion with the Lord in heaven, from where they intercede for us.
Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary Tuesday, December 8, 2020
Celebrates that God prepared Mary from the very first moment of her existence in the womb of St. Ann (her mother) to be "full of grace" and thus a worthy tabernacle--the Ark of the New Covenant--of Christ, the Son of God.
Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord Friday, December 25, 2020
Celebrates the birth of Jesus, Christ and Lord, who is the Savior of the world, in Bethlehem.  "The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us."
Additional Principal Celebrations
Epiphany of the Lord Sunday, January 3, 2021
Celebrates that Jesus is revealed to the magi by the light of a star is the light of salvation for all the nations of the world.
Baptism of Our Lord Sunday, January 10, 2021
Celebrates that the Lord Jesus, who has immersed himself in the human experience (except sin), is now immersed in the waters of baptism as an expression of his filial obedience to the Father.
Ash Wednesday Wednesday, February 17, 2021
Commemorates the annual start of the 40-day liturgical season of Lent, when, through intensified prayer, fasting and almsgiving, we "turn away from sin and believe in the Gospel."
Annunciation of Our Lord Thursday, March 25, 2021
Celebrates the beginning of the incarnation (when the Word of God became flesh), made possible by the great yes (“fiat”) of the Blessed Virgin Mary to become the Mother of the Son of God
Palm Sunday Sunday, March 28, 2021
Commemorates Jesus' entrance into the holy city of Jerusulem begins with the shouts of the crowd:  "Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!"  By the end of that same week, the crowds will be shouting, "Crucify him!"
The Sacred Triduum
Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday (Easter Vigil)
Thursday, April 1 - Sunday, April 4, 2021
The three days" are the most holy of the liturgical year because they commemorate the Institution of the Lord's Supper (Eucharist and Priesthood) in the Upper Room, with its mandatum/command to "wash the feet" of others in imitation of Jesus Christ; the Passion of the Lord, who suffered and died on the cross on Calvary for the sake of our salvation; and Holy Saturday, when we "vigil" in anticipation of the Easter joy that comes to the world through the Resurrection of Christ from the dead.
Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of the Lord  Sunday, April 4, 2021
Celebrates that Jesus rose from the dead and appeared to Mary of Magdala, who witnessed her vision to the apostles; Peter and John ran to the empty tomb; they saw and believed.
Divine Mercy Sunday  Sunday, April 11, 2021
Celebrates the gift of God’s mercy that comes to the whole world through the Passion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, especially through the sacrament of penance which forgives personal sin.
Pentecost Sunday  Sunday, May 23, 2021
Celebrates the fulfillment of Christ's promise of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon the Church gathered in the Upper Room, beginning with Mary and the apostles.
The Most Holy Trinity  Sunday, May 30, 2021
Celebrates the unique Christian revelation of our Lord as "one God in three divine persons": Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ  Sunday, June 16, 2021
Commemorates the gift of the Blessed Sacrament--the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist and the source of our communion with God--to the Church and world.
Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed  Monday, November 2, 2020
Commemorates all who have died, especially our brothers and sisters in Christ; we pray for God's mercy upon them, that as we await the day of Resurrection and Final Judgment, they may rest eternally in his merciful, loving and peaceful embrace.
Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe Sunday, November 22, 2020
Celebrates that the Lord Jesus reigns as King of all creation, "things visible and invisible" and that he will return as "Judge of the living and the dead" at the end of time
First Sunday of Advent Sunday, November 29, 2020
The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, & Joseph Sunday, December 27, 2020
Celebrates that the Word of God who came among us as one like us (in all things but sin), including that he ""lived and moved and had his being" in a human family.