Why the Exaltation of the Cross is not a Holy day of Obligation?
The Feast of the Exultation of the Cross is NOT a Holy day of obligation.It is one of the ancient and lovely feasts of the church because the old rugged cross still has a wondrous attraction for us Christians. This means it is a feast like all other feasts but NOT a day of obligation where it is ‘compulsory’ to attend Mass as we do on Sundays (all Sundays are treated as Holy days of obligation that is why we can’t miss Mass on a Sunday).
This does not mean we should not attend Mass….No. Every Mass gives us special graces. We are therefore encouraged, urged to attend Mass on this day especially for all those who can genuinely make it. The Exultation of the Cross celebration is similar to Ash Wednesday celebration which is also NOT a Holy day of obligation yet we all attend Mass because of the special graces we get at that Mass.
A Holy day of obligation, put simply, is a day, Feast or Solemnity which usually falls on a week day and yet we are to observe it like a Sunday by attending Mass. Attending Mass on a Holy day of obligation is compulsory. A typical example is Christmas Day (25th Dec.) which can fall on any day of the week but we are bound to attend Mass. Another Holy day of obligation is the Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary (15th August). There are a few more.
Again, the Exultation of the Cross is NOT a Holy day of obligation in the Catholic Church. Any attempts to make it look so is misleading.
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