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Lessons and Carols at St. Alban this Sunday

January 6th, 2015, Promulgated by Ludwig

The Fellowship of St. Alban will be holding their annual Lessons and Carols this Sunday, January 11 at Good Shepherd in Henrietta.

Details are in the flyer below.

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12 Responses to “Lessons and Carols at St. Alban this Sunday”

  1. avatar christian says:

    That’s wonderful! I am so glad that there is a church who offers a venue like A Festival of Lessons and Carols For Epiphany at the end of the Christmas Season, which further illustrates the Christmas Season lasts until the Baptism of our Lord.

  2. avatar Sid says:

    I thought the Christmas season didn’t officially end until Candlemas (a.k.a. Feast of Presentation of the Lord), forty days after Christmas on Feb 2nd. Have I been leaving up all the decorations too long all these years? Bernie?

  3. avatar Bernie says:

    My understanding is that the Christmas Season ends on the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord. The next day we enter Ordinary Time. But I do know that some people go to the Presentation. I don’t know the background to that tradition. Maybe it is a 40 days theme celebrated in some culture?

  4. avatar Sid says:

    @Bernie, I think you are right, certainly for the modern calendar anyhow.

    Perhaps there was just an *unofficial* tradition of sorts that Candlemas was the end? Looking in “The Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy: Principles and Guidelines — a Commentary”, (ed. by Peter Phan, Liturgical Press, 2005.) it says the following in Chapter 4, which covers the liturgical year (written by Keith F. Pecklers, S.J.):

    http://books.google.com/books?id=rQ7PsAK_b7oC&pg=PA82#v=onepage&q&f=false

    “The feast of the Presentation of the Lord originated in the East and was known as the feast of the Purification of Our Lady until 1969, falling forty days after Christmas and serving as the traditional end of Christmastide.”

    The word “traditional” above is a bit vague, though. That may mean in vernacular custom rather than the official Church calendar… It isn’t clear if that implies vestment colors switched back to green for non-feast days between Epiphany and Candlemas.

    I found a little more info from PrayTheMass.org which has a nice page on “Ordinary Time”. This suggests the period between Epiphany & Lent was Septuagesima, a period that was Ordinary Time *but* purple vestments were worn–-a sort of pre-Lent.

    http://praythemass.org/2013/01/the-green-season-ordinary-time/

    “Just a note about the Roman Calendar before the changes of 1970: these two periods of Ordinary Time were called first, the season After Epiphany and second, the season After Pentecost, with sequentially numbered Sundays. Between the Sundays of Epiphany and Ash Wednesday, the Church observed—and those parishes that celebrate Mass according to the Extraordinary Form of the Latin Rite today observe—the season of Septuagesima (literally, 70) as a pre-Lenten penitential period 70 days before Easter. Neither the Alleluia nor the Gloria is sung during the Sundays of Septuagesima and the vestment color is purple.”

    Anyhow, I suppose this is merely of academic interest today anyhow. As long as we remain in an era with a stripped-down feminized (thank you, Cardinal Burke) liturgy, such questions of historical practice and custom are merely in the realm of forgotten minutia.

  5. avatar Sid says:

    I seem to have a comment that has been stuck awaiting moderation since yesterday…
    Hello? Anyone home? Bueller…Bueller?

  6. avatar Ben Anderson says:

    Sid, unfortunately our spam software requires any comments with 2 or more links to be moderated. For future reference, you can get around that by putting 1 link in each comment (we obviously don’t limit the # of comments you can make).

    As to the length of Christmas, Jimmy Akin’s article explains the current calendar:
    http://jimmyakin.com/2011/12/the-twenty-plus-days-of-christmas.html

    Not sure how official, but I believe the old calendar kept the Christmas season until the Purification. Gueranger’s “Liturgical Year”:

    We apply the name of Christmas to the forty days which begin with the Nativity of our Lord, December 25, and end with the Purification of the Blessed Virgin, February 2.

    For the EF, the Sundays are now marked as nth Sunday after Epiphany.

  7. avatar Richard Thomas says:

    I have a question and I don’t know where to post it. Many priests in the Anglican rite are aging. What happens when they retire or die? Where do the new priests come from. Is there a seminary for the Anglican rite?

  8. avatar christian says:

    I don’t know how Jimmy Atkin could get confused with the Evening Prayer of the Nativity being December 25th, instead of December 24th. From before Vatican II, Christians have been celebrating Christmas beginning on Christmas Eve, December 24th. The Catholic Church and mainline Protestant churches had church services on Christmas Eve, the most notable being Midnight Mass or Midnight Service, which one was expected to travel to before midnight. (Nowadays, these masses/services start earlier at 11 P.M. or 11:30 A.M., even 10:30 P.M., and there are masses/services earlier in the evening from a time of 4 P.M. to 5:30 P.M.) Jesus Christ is depicted as being born in the night, so that is why there were and are, Midnight Masses/Services.

    Here is a link that is helpful regarding the beginning of the Christmas Season, and the end of the Christmas Season according to our Ordinary Form, and the end of Christmas according to our Extraordinary Form: https://www.catholiccompany.com/blog/does-christmas-end-on-epiphany

    When I was young, my Family, and the majority of families we knew, including relatives, neighbors, and close family friends, considered Christmas Eve the start of Christmas and an evening to be spent with Family. Even the television stations hailed the 24th of December as the start of Christmas. When we were quite young, my maternal grandparents came and spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with us.

    I remember my parents’ shock when they were invited to a cocktail party on Christmas Eve at a couple’s house who they had befriended, of which they had mutual friends in common from my father’s workplace. My father worked with the man, who was supposedly Catholic. The couple also had 3 small children at the time.
    This cocktail party was suppose to be a really big event. My parents declined the invitation and were surprised to learn that these other mutual friends were all attending.

    Both of my parents were completely astonished that 1. This couple with young children were hosting a party at their house on Christmas Eve. 2. The party was a cocktail party for adults. 3. The other couples attending this cocktail party were leaving their children behind at home on Christmas Eve.

    My parents were of different Christian denominations and they had some different Family Traditions, but what they had in common was that Christmas Eve was reserved for Family. My mother’s family traditionally opened their gifts late evening/night on Christmas Eve. My father’s family traditionally opened their gifts on Christmas morning. My mother’s family put candles in the window.
    Both of their fathers put up the tree and lights on Christmas Eve (was decorated by morning) and left the tree up to the very end of the Christmas Season. Both of their families put out a nativity scene. Both of their families attended a Midnight Mass/Service at their church, but very young children were taken to a morning Mass/Service. Special dishes and pastries were a part of their traditions. I still remember my mother making her special Christmas Kuchen. Christmas was made very special in my family, and both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were celebrated. In the days following Christmas Day in the Christmas Season, we would visit friends, neighbors, and relatives, and friends, neighbors, and relatives would visit us.

    I remember my parents choosing to stay with us children and making Christmas Eve and Christmas Day special. When us children became young adults, we made sure we had Christmas Eve off of work so we could spend Christmas Eve with our parents. Sometimes we had to negotiate it by working a shift on Christmas Day, but Christmas Dinner was reserved to when we could all eat together. And when married with children, we kept up the same tradition of going to my parents’ house for Christmas Eve. After my mother died, we kept up the tradition of Christmas Eve with Family at our house, and celebrating dinner on Christmas Day when we could all eat together. My children understand and have come to expect that Christmas Eve is a Family Evening/Night, and attending church is involved with the celebration of Christmas, and Christmas Day is spent having dinner with Family and visiting with them. We have on occasion, invited a known someone to eat with us who had nowhere else to go for Christmas. There’s no way I would ever think of holding a party, particularly a cocktail party for friendly adult associates, while ignoring my Family.

    I know I went off on the topic of Christmas Evening Prayer beginning on December 24th, but I couldn’t help but recall how one couple with young children decided to spend Christmas Eve, and how the other invited couples, except my parents, followed suit. It demonstrates that some people do not know how to celebrate Christmas and further, do not have any allegiance and concern for their children for this Holy Eve/Night. And there has been a question of why “The Family Unit” is disintegrating.

    I want to end with this quote regarding Ebenezer Scrooge after his reclamation:
    “And it was always said of him, he knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge. May that be truly said of us, and all of us! And so as Tiny Tim observed, God Bless Us, Everyone1” – from the Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

  9. avatar christian says:

    I don’t know how Jimmy Atkin could get confused with the Evening Prayer of the Nativity being December 25th, instead of December 24th. From before Vatican II, Christians have been celebrating Christmas beginning on Christmas Eve, December 24th. The Catholic Church and mainline Protestant churches had church services on Christmas Eve, the most notable being Midnight Mass or Midnight Service, which one was expected to travel to before midnight. (Nowadays, these masses/services start earlier at 11 P.M. or 11:30 A.M., even 10:30 P.M., and there are masses/services earlier in the evening from a time of 4 P.M. to 5:30 P.M.) Jesus Christ is depicted as being born in the night, so that is why there were and are, Midnight Masses/Services.

    Here is a link that is helpful regarding the beginning of the Christmas Season, and the end of the Christmas Season according to our Ordinary Form, and the end of Christmas according to our Extraordinary Form: https://www.catholiccompany.com/blog/does-christmas-end-on-epiphany

    When I was young, my Family, and the majority of families we knew, including relatives, neighbors, and close family friends, considered Christmas Eve the start of Christmas and an evening to be spent with Family. Even the television stations hailed the 24th of December as the start of Christmas. When we were quite young, my maternal grandparents came and spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with us.

    I remember my parents’ shock when they were invited to a cocktail party on Christmas Eve at a couple’s house who they had befriended, of which they had mutual friends in common from my father’s workplace. My father worked with the man, who was supposedly Catholic. The couple also had 3 small children at the time.
    This cocktail party was suppose to be a really big event. My parents declined the invitation and were surprised to learn that these other mutual friends were all attending.
    Both of my parents were completely astonished that 1. This couple with young children were hosting a party at their house on Christmas Eve. 2. The party was a cocktail party for adults. 3. The other couples attending this cocktail party were leaving their children behind at home on Christmas Eve.

    My parents were of different Christian denominations and they had some different Family Traditions, but what they had in common was that Christmas Eve was reserved for Family. My mother’s family traditionally opened their gifts late evening/night on Christmas Eve. My father’s family traditionally opened their gifts on Christmas morning. My mother’s family put candles in the window.
    Both of their fathers put up the tree and lights on Christmas Eve (was decorated by morning) and left the tree up to the very end of the Christmas Season. Both of their families put out a nativity scene. Both of their families attended a Midnight Mass/Service at their church, but very young children were taken to a morning Mass/Service. Special dishes and pastries were a part of their traditions. I still remember my mother making her special Christmas Kuchen. Christmas was made very special in my family, and both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were celebrated. In the days following Christmas Day in the Christmas Season, we would visit friends, neighbors, and relatives, and friends, neighbors, and relatives would visit us.

    I remember my parents choosing to stay with us children and making Christmas Eve and Christmas Day special. When us children became young adults, we made sure we had Christmas Eve off of work so we could spend Christmas Eve with our parents. Sometimes we had to negotiate it by working a shift on Christmas Day, but Christmas Dinner was reserved to when we could all eat together. And when married with children, we kept up the same tradition of going to my parents’ house for Christmas Eve. After my mother died, we kept up the tradition of Christmas Eve with Family at our house, and celebrating dinner on Christmas Day when we could all eat together. My children understand and have come to expect that Christmas Eve is a Family Evening/Night, and attending church is involved with the celebration of Christmas, and Christmas Day is spent having dinner with Family and visiting with them. We have on occasion, invited a known someone to eat with us who had nowhere else to go for Christmas. There’s no way I would ever think of holding a party, particularly a cocktail party for friendly adult associates, while ignoring my Family.

    I know I went off on the topic of Christmas Evening Prayer beginning on December 24th, but I couldn’t help but recall how one couple with young children decided to spend Christmas Eve, and how the other invited couples, except my parents, followed suit. It demonstrates that some people do not know how to celebrate Christmas and further, do not have any allegiance and concern for their children for this Holy Eve/Night. And there has been a question of why “The Family Unit” is disintegrating.

    I want to end with this quote regarding Ebenezer Scrooge after his reclamation:
    “And it was always said of him, he knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge. May that be truly said of us, and all of us! And so as Tiny Tim observed, God Bless Us, Everyone1? – from the Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

  10. avatar Hopefull says:

    A very beautiful sharing. Thank you.

  11. avatar christian says:

    Your welcome hopeful, thanks for the words of affirmation.

    For those who didn’t use the very informative link I posted from the blog “Catholic Traditions” on the Catholic Company Website by an author with a M.A. in Christian Apologetics who is a lay Dominican, here is an excerpt:

    “The end of the octave is the end of the Christmas feast proper, after which begins the longer Christmas season that extends either to the Baptism of the Lord for the Ordinary Form (the Sunday after Epiphany) or the Presentation of the Lord for the Extraordinary Form (February 2). However this understanding of a proper Christmas ‘feast’ in some traditions is also associated with the 12 Days of Christmas which culminates on Epiphany.”

  12. avatar christian says:

    Sid: You are not leaving your Christmas decorations up too long -that is your option if you want to follow the traditional end of the longer Christmas season, which had been followed by many observant Catholics and Mainline Protestants.

    Prior to Vatican II, The Presentation of the Lord, Feb. 2nd, was considered the end of the longer Christmas season. After Vatican II, The Baptism of the Lord was considered the end of the longer Christmas season. Although in some places, traditions and cultures, Epiphany has and is considered the end of the longer Christmas season.

    If people want to observe the end of Christmas according to the Extraordinary Form of the Mass or older church tradition, they are perfectly within bounds of the Christmas season to keep up their Christmas decorations to Feb.2nd, The Presentation of the Lord, according to this article.

    Many people keep their Christmas decorations/lights up until February just to have some uplifting cheer throughout the shorter winter days of January with less daylight, with often tough, weather conditions, and also to combat the letdown after Christmas, of ordinary and dreary winter days.


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