Sunday, January 8, 2012

Baptism of the Lord, or no?

My print breviaries, both the 1976 Catholic Book Publishing edition, and the 2007 Mundelein  Psalter, state that when the Epiphany is observed on January 8th, that the feast of the Baptism of the Lord is omitted, and one goes back to Ordinary Time on Monday, Jan. 9th.

On the other hand, my parish calendar clearly says "Baptism of the Lord" for tomorrow, and the two online breiviaries that I checked both have the office of the Baptism in the queue for tomorrow.

I forgot to check tomorrow's mass in the missalette when I was at mass today, so I don't know what that says about Monday morning's mass.

Personally, I like the Christmas season to last as long as possible, so it will be the Baptism office for me. But I'm curious about this conflict. Did the United  States bishops decide in very recent years to carry the Baptism over to Monday as a revision of the liturgical calendar?  I don't remember what happened that last time we had this situation.

If any of you have an explanation for the discrepancy between print breviaries and everything else, let us know.

What I do know is this: sad as it is to see the Christmas season draw to a close, it's always something of a relief to get back to ordinary time after one of the most confusing weeks, liturgy-wise, in the entire year.

PS We'll be on Tuesday, week I on Tuesday.
PPS Update! Just checked the USCCB calendar, and it too has the Baptism for Monday. So it's official.


  1. I am guessing this is one of those issues where the bishops conferences have the last word. Probably, the USCCB had something to do with this. The Ordo for dioceses in our region has the Baptism of the Lord listed for Monday.

  2. Is it possible that this is because Epiphany is really on 6 January, and not when we celebrated it today.
    That would mean the instruction would say that Epiphany occurs on a Friday or Saturday, Ordinary time has to get going on that Sunday. We just reinterpret the rules for some reason...

  3. I just looked up and found that the Baptism of the Lord used to be on the 13th of January. This makes the breviary make sense about the different sections that we have skipped because of the Sunday Christmas season.

  4. Here in Japan when I went to morning Prayer and mass this morning, it was also The Baptism of the Lord.

  5. It is an older rubric that has remained because the liturgical books have not been updated. However the change (Baptism celebrated on the Monday) was decreed in Celebratio baptismatis Domini in honore in 1977.

  6. Forgot to give the link: in Latin on pg 682

  7. The resident Office expert in my Dominican Lay Fraternities chapter said that it was an outdated rubric as well. He also compared the Latin and Spanish offices (from his personal copies), and they both agreed on the fact that the Baptism should be celebrated today.

  8. Thanks for weighing in,everyone. It was a good guess that the rubric in the breviary was outdated. Just wanted to track down the date and source of the change.
    Anonymous, I don't read much Latin, but my husband does, and he thinks you might have linked the wrong document. The ones you sent seem to be lots of juridical stuff related to the ordering of the diocese of Rome. If you can find/translate/copy/paste the relevant statements, I'd appreciate it, if it's not too much trouble.
    Thank you again for your comments.

  9. Hmmmm.....not sure why that didn't work = it's seems to display fne for me. But here goes (Latin copy-paste)

    De celebratione Baptismatis Domini

    Celebratio Baptismatis Domini in honore posita est per instaurationem Calendarii Romani generalis et dominicae post Epiphaniam occurrenti assignata, quo facilius ab universa communitate christiana hac
    die congregata ageretur. Magni enim momenti sunt aspectus doctrinales, pastorales et oecumenici huius festi in historia salutis et in anno liturgico.

    Attamen, in locis ubi sollemnitas Epiphaniae non est de praecepto
    servanda, et ideo dominicae intra diem 2 et 8 ianuarii occurrenti assignatur, haud raro accidit ut festum Baptismatis Domini cum ipsa sollemnitate Epihaniae occurrat et proinde celebrari non possit.
    Attentis insuper petitionibus pluribus hac de re factis, Sacra haec Congregatio pro Sacramentis et Cultu Divino, approbante Summo Pontifice Paulo VI, statuit :
    In locis ubi sollemnitas Epiphaniae in dominicam est transferenda
    et haec die 7 vel 8 ianuarii incidit, ita ut festum Baptismatis Domini,
    eadem die occurrens, esset omittendum, idem festum Baptismatis Domini ad feriam II immediate sequentem transferatur.
    Contrariis quibuslibet minime obstantibus.

    Ex Aedibus S. Congregationis pro Sacramentis et Cultu Divino, die
    7 Octobris 1977.

  10. Thanks, Anonymous! Now I can see what it says. Not at all hard to translate.