November 12, 2009

When is the Feast of Mother Cabrini?

This is one of those for which I just don't have the background.

Here in the United States, tomorrow, November 13, is the feast of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, given at the rank of obligatory memorial.

In my Extraordinary Form Ordo cum missis propriis dioecesium Civitatum Foederatarum Americae Septentrionalis, (i.e. for the U.S.A.) which--quite sketchily and revealingly--does not list a publisher, Mother Cabrini is also listed for tomorrow as a iii class feast with the notation "US." However, in the back of the book, it is noted that in the dioceses of Indianaopolis, Joliet, Green Bay, Alexandria, and in the "vicariate" of Alaska, this is a first class feast not for tomorrow, but back on January 3.

Indeed, Mother Cabrini does appear on January 3 in my EF Missals, but only as a commemoration during the Mass of St. Gaspar del Bufalo, whom I am meeting for the first time in the course of this little investigation.

As if this weren't confusing enough, Wikipedia--from which I have lifted this lovely photo--lists Mother's feast day as December 22. Now as everybody knows, this is no time to schedule one's feast day, as you will be perpetually impeded by the proper Masses and Offices that ramp up to Christmas.

The date of December 22 (1917) seems to be her death date, which is a venerable means of establishing a feast day. November 13 (1938) seems to be the beatification date. I haven't figured out January 3.

Will the real feast of Mother Cabrini please stand up!

Even further, for Franciscans who might offer Mass in the EF tomorrow, it is also the iii class feast of St. Didacus. If it is indeed also the iii class feast of F.X. Cabrini, I wouldn't know who gets the day and who gets commemorated, given that there is no way (that I know of) to establish precedence, e.g. if one was a martyr, etc. Usually a missal would just let you know, but since these days are in different parts of the missal, Mother being in the appendix of American propers, and under a different day besides, it might get confusing.

Perhaps I should go consult with her in person. She's only a bus and two trains away. (Westchester #2 to from Park Ave. and Shonnard Place in Yonkers to 242nd and Broadway, 1 Train to 168th St., A train back to 190th St.)

In the end, as I have written before, if we are to fulfill Benedict's desire for a 'mutual enrichment' of the two forms of the Roman Rite, as he wrote in his cover letter to Summorum pontificum, these are exactly the sort of things that will need to be worked out in time.


Warren said...

There is a franciscan supplement to the breviary (LOTH), I imagine there must be a franciscan supplement to the GIRM calendar (Ritual), right?


Thom Curnutte said...

It's my personal opinion that both forms should use the SAME calendar and readings. To do otherwise promotes disunity and literally creates "two" churches in "one."

Brother Charles said...

Yes, there is indeed. But in the OF, Didacus was back on November 7, and I think he may have fallen off even the Franciscan calendar altogether.

Brother Charles said...

Thom: I agree that we should be thinking in those terms, and that this is what Benedict's letter seems to imagine.

Qualis Rex said...

Father Charles - I agree with you entirely. The church needs to "reconcile" the pre Vatican II calendar with the current one, lest we run the risk of creating "old calendarists" very much like the ones that plague the Orthodox church.

Also, I will add this: I've always been incredibly incensed at the disrespect the post-conciliar church paid to many of the saints, namely Sts George, Christopher, and especially Oliva (pray for us!!!) How the church can say these people did not exist due to "lack of proof" any more than say any Old Testament figure is sincerely beyond me. There have been numerous miracles attributed to them, local devotions paid to them etc. To calously "remove" them or say "there is no evidence they ever existed" is to me scandalous and irreverent.

[Rant]Want evidence St George existed? Look to the Coptic and Ethiopian churches who have been loyally and steadfastly devoted to him since the 3rd century.[/Rant]

Brother Charles said...

QR: think of my poor associate here in the parochial vicariate, Fr. Christopher (born Paul), he now lacks a name day.

Anonymous said...

I believe that there is a difference between removing a saint from the Roman calendar and claiming that they are not saints. If the Church said that there was no St. Christopher or no St. Philomena, etc. then I would like to know when and where the Church made this pronouncement.

There are thousands of saints and only 365 days in the year. It would be impossible to celebrate each one.

Pace e bene~


kannan said...

Welcome to

ben in denver said...

My FSSP calendar lists St. Frances Cabrini today for the US, and St. Didacus for other places.

I'd like to see some calendar reform as well. I'd especially like to see some of the saints like Juan Diego and Maximillian Kolbe celebrated in the EF. However, I would not like to see the overall structure of the EF calendar changed. One obvious advantage of the older calendar comes this weekend, when we will celebrate the mass of the 6th Sunday after the Epiphany, having run out of Sudays after Pentecost.

I think there is a good deal of wisdom in taking the left-over pre-Lent readings and putting them before Advent, which is also a penitential season. I have always thought is was somewhat jarring in the newer calendar that Ordinary Time is resumed right after Pentecost, with readings designed to get us ready for Lent. I don't think they fit well there.

Brother Charles said...

I agree that the seams between Ordinary Time and the Lent-Triduum-Easter seasons are one of the weaknesses of the reformed calendar, along with the loss of the "pre-Lent" Sundays and the sense of "after Pentecost."