So here we are in the middle of November. In a couple of short weeks we will usher in the Advent Season and begin a new liturgical year. As this liturgical year comes to an end with the Solemnity of Christ the King on the 26th, I thought this would be a good opportunity to go over the liturgical seasons of the Church.*

The liturgical year is made up of six seasons:
Advent – four weeks of preparation before the celebration of Jesus’ birth

Christmas – recalling the Nativity of Jesus Christ and his manifestation to the peoples of the world

Lent – a six-week period of penance before Easter

Sacred Paschal Triduum – the holiest “Three Days” of the Church’s year, where the Christian people recall the suffering, death, and resurrection of Jesus

Easter – 50 days of joyful celebration of the Lord’s resurrection from the dead and his sending forth of the Holy Spirit

Ordinary Time – divided into two sections (one span of 4-8 weeks after Christmas Time and another lasting about six months after Easter Time), wherein the faithful consider the fullness of Jesus’ teachings and works among his people. The mystery of Christ, unfolded through the cycle of the year, calls us to live his mystery in our own lives. This call is best illustrated in the lives of Mary and the saints, celebrated by the Church throughout the year. There is no tension between the mystery of Christ and the celebration of the saints, but rather a marvelous harmony. The Blessed Virgin Mary is joined by an inseparable bond to the saving work of her Son, and the feasts of all the saints proclaim the wonderful works of Christ in his servants and offer the faithful fitting examples for their imitation. Each liturgical year begins on the First Sunday of Advent during the preceding calendar year (i.e., the First Sunday of Advent in 2022 began the 2023 liturgical year).

Hope it’s not too soon to wish you a Happy Thanksgiving and a Blessed Advent Season!
~Fr. Jeff
*United States College of Catholic Bishops: