Pet peeve. Ascension Sunday. Second and related pet peeve: Priests who try to rationalize it away and make us feel better about it.
Twice in a week I’ve heard a priest say (with a smile) that the feast was moved because we’re too busy as a country to go to Mass on a Thursday, and it’s just too important of a feast to miss.
Um, so let’s move Christmas to a Sunday. Because that’s pretty important, too.
I don’t mean any disrespect to a priest or bishop who thinks moving the Ascension to a Sunday is a good thing. Yes, it is a very important feast day, and it’s the least-appreciated part of the Paschal Mystery. We talk a lot about Jesus’ death and resurrection and then Pentecost, and somehow miss the Ascension.
But don’t try to rationalize moving a feast day. People didn’t go to Mass on a Holy Day of Obligation. That’s a problem that needs fixing. So one solution was to move the Feast.
Another solution would be to preach the necessity of going to Mass on Holy Days.
Those dioceses who moved the feast didn’t do anything wrong — but let’s be honest. It was because of our hardness of heart. Let’s not pat ourselves on the back for it.