“On the tenth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me, ten lords a-leaping ...”
Today, the traditional Roman calendar observes the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus, while the contemporary calendar observes either the Second Sunday After Christmas, or the Solemnity of the Epiphany. Why the latter, you ask? This is a judgment by a competent territorial body of bishops. In this instance, and as it would apply to the American bishops, the term "competent" is used guardedly. You see, they think you are entirely too lazy for celebrating anything on a weekday. So they make it convenient for you. They would probably provide drive-thru confessions, but an army of lawyers and "risk assessment specialists" probably didn't want to take any chances. Perhaps once we succeed in converting the culture for Christ, they'll move Christmas to a Sunday as well. Almost seems worth it, right?
We can say all we want about "the reason for the season" and "keeping Christ in Christmas" and all that. But such festivity presumes a value, a meaning, of sacred time. We can assure ourselves "our bishops know what they're doing." But how can something be sacred if they can bend it and twist it to suit one's convenience?
Do they really know what they're doing?
Here at Chez Alexandre, we have celebrated Epiphany on the traditional day, even before regularly attending the Traditional Mass. Still, there is a great temptation to take down the lights already, to return the tree decorations to their place of reservation until the season returns, and to send the dying tree to its final resting place. But there are presents yet to wrap for the "little Christmas" this Wednesday night.
Oh yeah, I also go back to work on Monday. And it's FREEZING out there.
[THIS JUST IN: On a related note, Msgr Charles Pope of the Archdiocese of Washington posts an article on his blog entitled “A Feast that is Missing in Action?”]