The Armchair Liturgist: Sixth or Seventh Sunday?

When the directive surfaced to observe Ascension on the nearest Sunday rather than the traditional Thursday, an option was offered in its wake. I don’t see it mentioned on the USCCB site today. I do remember that instead of losing the seventh Sunday readings and prayers, they could be substituted on the sixth Sunday. The cycle C Scriptures are here. For worshippers in Ascension Thursday dioceses, they won’t miss the stoning of Stephen, a royal Psalm, the 97th, the last words in the Bible, or the end of Jesus’ Last Supper prayer.

Given that Ascension will be observed on Sunday (the utility of that decision can be debated elsewhere) which set of readings would you use in your parish? If your community was associated with Saint Stephen, does that affect your decision?

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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2 Responses to The Armchair Liturgist: Sixth or Seventh Sunday?

  1. Liam says:

    It’s only mentioned in a footnote on page 25 of their PDF version of the liturgical calendar, and omitted from the interactive readings site:

    “When the Ascension of the Lord is celebrated on the following Sunday, the Second Reading and Gospel from the Seventh Sunday of Easter (see no. 61) may be read on the Sixth Sunday of Easter.”

  2. Liam says:

    So, there is *no* substitution of the *First Reading*, which for all three years involve incidents specific to the period after the Ascension.

    The Second Readings for the 7th Sunday of Easter are still part of the course reading from the earlier Sundays of Easter: 1 Peter for Year A, 1 John for Year B, and Revelation for Year C.

    The Gospels for the 7th Sunday of Easter are the last 3 pericopes from the nine-parts of the Final Discourse used for Easter 5-6-7 (Year A is part VII (Glorify your Son), Year B is part VIII (Consecrate them in truth), and Year C is part IX (May they be one), so they are actually in sequence in that regard; the potentially elided pericopes for Easter 6 for A-B-C are parts III (If you love me)-VI (No greater love)-IV (Peace is my gift to you), respectively).

    I suspect music folks might miss those Easter 6 pericopes if they like to program to echo the readings (something and others moved away from over time, but I believe it’s still common, even dominant).

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