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The proclamation of the date of Easter and the other moveable feasts on Epiphany dates from a time when calendars were not readily
available.It was necessary to make
known the date of Easter in advance, since many celebrations of the liturgical
year depend on its date.The number of
Sundays that follow Epiphany, the date of Ash Wednesday, and the number of
Sundays that follow Pentecost are all computed in relation to Easter.
Although calendars now give the
date of Easter and the other feasts in the liturgical year for many years in
advance, the Epiphany proclamation still has value.It is a reminder of the centrality of the
resurrection of the Lord in the liturgical year and the importance of the great
mysteries of faith which are celebrated each year.
Each year the proper dates for Ash
Wednesday, Easter, Ascension, Pentecost, the Most Holy Body and Blood of
Christ, and the First Sunday of Advent must be inserted into the text.Those dates are found in the table which is
included with the introductory documents of the Roman Missal.The form to be
used for announcing each dates is: the date
of month, e.g., “the seventh day of
On the Epiphany of the Lord, after the singing of the Gospel, a Deacon or cantor, in keeping with an ancient practice of Holy Church, announces from the ambo the moveable feasts of the current year according to the following text. (The musical notation is found in Appendix I of the Roman Missal, Third Edition.)
On the first day of March will fall Ash Wednesday,
and the beginning of the fast of the most sacred Lenten season.
On the sixteenth day of April you will celebrate with joy Easter Day,
the Paschal feast of our Lord Jesus Christ.
[In those places where the Ascension is observed on Thursday:
On the twenty-fifth day of May will be the Ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ.]
[In those places where the Ascension is transferred to the Seventh Sunday of Easter:
On the twenty-eighth day of May will be the Ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ.]
On the fourth day of June, the feast of Pentecost.
On the eighteenth day of June the feast of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ.
On the third day of December, the First Sunday of the Advent of our Lord Jesus Christ,
to whom is honor and glory for ever and ever.
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