Earlier this week, Daria of Coffee and Canticles wrote about how she accidentally missed the feast of Saint Mark because she forgets to check the calendar and the proper before starting in on the psalter. And I got excited, because I had that very problem (in a bad way) until I added a custom liturgical calendar to my burgeoning calendar habit. In fact, I had just updated it with the moveable celebrations through the end of 2014.
So I quickly sanitized my domestic church calendar down to the feasts and solemnities of the General Roman Calendar (+ US), stuck it up as a public google calendar, and offered it for public use. (If you’re interested, you can subscribe here.)
Then I found out that not everyone checks their calendar regularly even before they get out of bed. …mea culpa.
But this post isn’t really about me sticking my foot down my esophagus. (Again.) It’s about what I sanitized out of my calendar before publishing it.
I started out with just the solemnities. Then I added the feasts. Then memorials. Then I thought – if I want all this, why don’t I just subscribe to RomCal? I looked at RomCal again, and remembered why I never used it in the first place. RomCal has an entry for every day of every week, and it is entirely overwhelming. I went back to my homemade calendar of solemnities and feasts, and started thinking about how to make this work.
Then I read the Universal Norms on the Liturgical Year and the General Roman Calendar. It not only told me exactly what I wanted, but also how to do it properly.
What I wanted was a particular calendar for our domestic church. The memorials on it ought to be of appropriate to our vocation, or of special significance to our family, days deserving celebration. But at the same time, they ought not interfere with the chief celebrations of the liturgical year. They shouldn’t be on the calendar in such excess that they obscure the seasons of the liturgical year. And finally, because this is a homebrew particular calendar instead of a anything official, these days (usually) remain memorials and don’t receive the greater significance they would receive in the official particular calendar of a local church or a religious community.
Here’s what I ended up with:
- Our wedding anniversary and birthdays – we take the memorials of these days as patronal celebrations, especially the memorial of our wedding anniversary which seems analogous to the patronal feast of a church. It also provides a nice random sample of memorials throughout the liturgical year. The only exception is GeekBaby, who I can’t stop mentally associating with Saint Bonaventure, whose feast was on his due date.
- Saint’s Days, especially for the littles (and including those for our godchildren.)
- Baptismal anniversaries (also including those of our godchildren.)
- The memorial of our parish patron. This is the only memorial we keep as a feast, since it’s our primary link to the larger church.
- Memorials of Saints with special significance for our family. Saint Nicholas is here, obviously. But we also have Saints Blaise and Lucy as patrons of particular health concerns, Saints Patrick and Juan Diego as part of our heritage, and a small handful of memorials with special significance to individuals.
- Memorials that it offends my CDO to omit.
- And finally, the anniversary of each of our miscarriages. Instead of memorials, these are listed as Office for the Dead.
This has ended up working very well. It keeps the number of celebrations down to a
reasonable number dull roar. But at the same time it makes our celebration of the liturgical year more deliberate and consistent instead of just something that crops up during Advent/Christmas and Lent/Easter.