1. Religion & Spirituality

Is Assumption a Holy Day of Obligation?

By

Stained-glass window of the Assumption in Saint Mary's Church, Painesville, OH. (© Scott P. Richert)

A stained-glass window of the Assumption in Saint Mary's Church, Painesville, OH.

(Photo © Scott P. Richert)
Question: Is Assumption a Holy Day of Obligation?
In the United States and other countries, the bishops have received permission from the Vatican to abrogate (temporarily waive) the requirement for Catholics to attend Mass on certain Holy Days of Obligation, when those Holy Days fall on either Saturday or Monday. Because of this, some Catholics have become confused about whether certain feasts are, in fact, Holy Days of Obligation. The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (August 15) is one such Holy Day.
Answer: The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary is a Holy Day of Obligation. However, when it falls on a Saturday or a Monday, the obligation to attend Mass is abrogated. For instance, the Feast of the Assumption fell on Saturday in 2009 and Monday in 2011; in both cases, Catholics in the United States were not required to attend Mass. (Catholics elsewhere may be; if you do not reside in the United States and Assumption falls on a Saturday or a Monday, check with your priest or your diocese to determine whether the obligation remains in effect in your country.)

More About Holy Days of Obligation:

FAQs About Holy Days of Obligation:

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.