Through the Liturgical year, we grow in knowledge and love for our Lord and all the Saints in heaven, and we can grow in holiness as we celebrate the special days of the Church as we live liturgically.
There are six Liturgical seasons.
Advent- four weeks of preparation before the celebration of Jesus' birth on Christmas. It is the day we await that is the fulfillment of the scriptures, the day of the nativity of Jesus Christ, our savior from sin and our redeemer, and the one that shows us the way to His glory in Heaven through His life.
Christmas- Nativity of Jesus Christ! Jesus's Birthday!
Lent- a six-week period of penance before Easter. Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are obligatory days of fasting and abstinence for Catholics. We should always do the meatless Friday all year round as each Friday should be a mini good Friday.
Jesus went to the desert and fasted for forty days. This a holy season of self-denial. Jesus's fasting prepared Him to commune with God thus strengthening Him against the devil’s temptations. The constant hunger is a constant reminder of God. Fasting gave Jesus the strength to reject the devil's temptations. Lent reminds us to be with Jesus in the desert. It is a time of fasting from things in order to help us become holier though avoiding sin or bad habits through self-denial for the betterment of our souls.
Sacred Paschal Triduum- the holiest "Three Days" of the Church's year, where the Christian people recall the suffering, death, and resurrection of Jesus.
The summit of the Liturgical Year is the Easter Triduum—from the evening of Holy Thursday to the evening of Easter Sunday. Though chronologically three days, they are liturgically one day unfolding for us the unity of Christ's Paschal Mystery. The single celebration of the Triduum marks the end of the Lenten season, and leads to the Mass of the Resurrection of the Lord at the Easter Vigil.
Easter- 50 days of joyful celebration of the Lord's resurrection from the dead and his sending forth of the Holy Spirit.
Easter Sunday is the greatest of all Sundays. This is the reason that we celebrate the Holy Mass! The season of Easter is the most important of all liturgical times, which Catholics celebrate as the Lord's resurrection from the dead, culminating in his Ascension to the Father and sending of the Holy Spirit upon the Church. The octave of Easter comprises the eight days which stretch from the first to the second Sunday. It is a way of prolonging the joy of the initial day. There are 50 days of Easter from the first Sunday to Pentecost. It is characterized, above all, by the joy of glorified life and the victory over death expressed most fully in the great resounding cry of the Christian: Alleluia! All faith flows from faith in the resurrection: "If Christ has not been raised, then empty is our preaching; empty, too, is your faith." (1 Cor 15:14) Pentecost marks the birthday of the Church!
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.
Christmas Time and Easter Time highlight the central mysteries of the Paschal Mystery, namely, the incarnation, death on the cross, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ, and the descent of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. The Sundays and weeks of Ordinary Time, on the other hand, take us through the life of Christ. This is the time of conversion. This is living the life of Christ.
Ordinary Time is a time for growth and maturation, a time in which the mystery of Christ is called to penetrate ever more deeply into history until all things are finally caught up in Christ. The goal, toward which all of history is directed, is represented by the final Sunday in Ordinary Time, the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe.
This is a Liturgical Year!
“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.”
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