New to following the Liturgical Calendar and unsure of when to turn each page and mark each season?
Because there are various formulas that determine when many of the seasons and feast days begin, the dates of the seasons can change from year to year. Here’s a cheat sheet, describing how to determine the dates of the seasons for each year as well as the specifics for the year at hand. (Another favorite resource? Google! Simply type in the season and year in question, such as “Lent 2016,” and first day of Lent will appear at the top of the page!)
God with Us
Beginning on the fourth Sunday before Christmas Day and lasting four full weeks, plus the additional few days leading up to Christmas. The season of Advent ends on Christmas Eve, when we transition to the Christmas season at sundown.
Advent 2018: Sunday, December 2 – Monday, December 24
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Twelve days, beginning at sundown on Christmas Eve, December 24, and lasting through January 5. Also known as Christmastide.
Christmastide 2018-2019: Tuesday, December 25 – Saturday, January 5
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January 6, marking the end of the Christmas season. While some traditions mark Epiphany simply as a feast day and return to Ordinary Time until the season of Lent, others mark Epiphany as an entire season lasting until Ash Wednesday.
Epiphany 2019: Sunday, January 6
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God for Us
Determined by the date of Easter Sunday, which falls on the first Sunday after the first full moon on or after the spring equinox in the Northern Hemisphere. To verify the beginning of Lent, which lasts 40 days (not counting Sundays), count back six weeks from Easter Sunday and then four additional days. This will lead you to Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent.
Lent 2019: (Ash) Wednesday, March 6 – Saturday, April 20 (the precise ending varies on tradition and how Holy Week or the Paschal Triduum is marked)
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Still part of the season of Lent, beginning on the Sunday before Easter (also known as Palm Sunday) and ending with the Easter Vigil on the evening before Easter Sunday. Some traditions also mark the Paschal Triduum, a three-day period of prayer that bridges the season of Lent and the season of Easter. The Paschal Triduum lasts from the evening of Maundy Thursday through Easter Sunday.
Holy Week 2019: (Palm) Sunday, April 14 – (Holy) Saturday, April 20
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Fifty days, beginning on Easter Sunday (the first Sunday after the first full moon on or after the spring equinox in the Northern Hemisphere) and ending with the feast of Pentecost. Also known as Eastertide.
Eastertide 2019: Sunday, April 21 – Sunday, June 9
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A feast day on the final day of the Easter season, occurring on the seventh Sunday after Easter Sunday.
Pentecost 2019: Sunday, June 9
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God through Us
The time between the Feast of Pentecost and the season of Advent; in some traditions also defines the time between the Feast of Epiphany and the season of Lent. Numbered by week, such as “The first Sunday of Ordinary Time” or “The first Sunday after Epiphany,” “The first Sunday after Pentecost,” and so on.
Ordinary Time 2019 (observation varies by tradition):
- I: Monday, January 7 – Tuesday, March 5
- II: Monday, June 10 – Saturday, November 30