If you have just started your Catholic journey, you should be aware of the significance and meaning of particular events taking place in The Catholic Church. As you can imagine, not all of the important dates have equal meaning and are celebrated in the same way.
This article will help you to explore the categorisation of the crucial days of the Catholic liturgical calendar so that you will understand the significance of particular days better.
The solemnities of The Roman Catholic Church
In fact, there are four popular types of all of the crucial events of The Roman Catholic Church. The most significant ones are categorised as solemnity. These are special feast days which are regarded of the highest importance of the Roman Rite which gave them the highest rank. This can be specifically noticed if you check the Roman Rite’s liturgical calendar.
For example, the very first solemnity of the year happens right on the first of January. This is the day of Mary Mother of God. This year, the celebration of this crucial Catholic event took place on Saturday.
The feast days celebrated by the Catholic community
When it comes to the events of the Roman Catholic Church which are featured with special celebration, there are also special days called feasts. This name is officially used by the Catholic Church for referring to the religious celebrations which take place on the annual basis.
For instance, Baptism of the Lord which will happen on the 9th of January this year is a feast. It is crucial to emphasise solemnities and feasts are not regarded as the same type of an event by The Roman Catholic Church.
The Catholic Memorial Days
Even if you have never celebrated memorial days before, you have certainly come across special dates dedicated to particular saints or a single saint. In the liturgical calendar of The Roman Rite, such events are called memorial days. Pay your attention to the fact there are also optional memorial days. As you can imagine, they are also the days for commemorating a single saint or a group of saints, however, the celebration of these days is optional in the Catholic religion. The rank in the liturgical calendar for these days is also lower respectively.
The particular days on which the celebrations take place
Note the dates in the calendar of The Roman Church can be either fixed or floating. The majority of crucial events have the same dates every year, however, for some of them, the dates are changing every year.
Actually, both of the January Catholic feasts such as Baptism of our Lord and Epiphany are held on floating dates. For the first feast, the day of celebration depends on the day on which the celebration of Epiphany is held as traditionally, Baptism of Our Lord happens on the first Sunday after the day of Epiphany. When it comes to the day of Epiphany, there is another rule determining the particular date of celebration. This event should happen on Sunday which takes place between the 2nd of January and the 8th of January.
The celebrations of specific countries
You can also find some specific religious days celebrated in particular countries. For example, the national calendars of Argentina, Canada and The USA have some particular days approved by their Conferences of Catholic Bishops. Thus, you can see a number of Catholic events on particular days related to some countries which are not celebrated or even known to the Catholic community in your country.