Author Topic: Do any traditional Catholics use the Julian [Old] Calendar for their worship ?  (Read 710 times)

Offline Edmundia

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Are there any traditional Catholics who want to live traditional & liturgical lives by following the Old Julian Calendar ? - -for example in praying the Divine Office and celebrating feasts ?  I know (someone I admire very much) someone who says that by doing this you are following the REAL feast days on their real days and anniversaries. You also avoid ghastly commercial Yuletide on 25th Dec. and celebrate it on the 7th Jan.  when most people have forgotten it. The problem, of course, is that you never get the right feast on the right day - what the priest is celebrating at the Altar.  Any views, any ideas ?
 

Offline aquinas138

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I think it's fairly indefensible from a Catholic standpoint. The Church has been on the Gregorian calendar for centuries.

Many Orthodox Churches, though not all, since they deny the Pope's authority to have made the change from the Julian to the Gregorian, continue to use the Julian Calendar, so if you'd rather celebrate Christmas with the Russian Orthodox than your fellow Catholics, go for it, I guess.
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Offline Michael Wilson

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There is nothing more sacred in the Gregorian Calendar than the Julian one; the Gregorian Calendar is a "fixing" of the Julian Calendar. When Julius Caesar adopted the Egyptian Calendar, he also adopted their erroneous measure of a year as being 365.25 days; that decimal was off slightly from the real number is 365.2421891 days; it doesn't look like a big number, but  by the time of Pope Gregory the XIII, the calendar was already off by 10 days. Now the importance of the Calendar in liturgical terms, is to be able to celebrate Easter on the correct date; if the calendar is off, so will the day that Easter is celebrated. the Gregorian Calendar is not perfect. It still becomes one day off the seasons every 3216 years, which can still be accepted. Eventually (if the world is still around), the Gregorian calendar will also have to be fixed.
So maybe you want to know how we determine the date for Easter? In 325 CE, the Council of Nicaea established that Easter would be held on the first Sunday after the first Full Moon occurring on or after the vernal equinox.  From that point forward, the Easter date depended on the ecclesiastical approximation of March 21 for the vernal equinox. If your calendar is accurate, then the Vernal Equinox should happen on March 21; so that when that day appears, you know that the first Sunday after the first full moon, will be Easter Sunday. The Julian Calendar is now off 13 days behind the Gregorian Calendar, which means that their March 21, does not occur until 13 days after the Vernal Equinox, which means that their Easter will also be off by 13 days. This "lag" of days will only increase over time.
"The World Must Conform to Our Lord and not He to it." Rev. Dennis Fahey CSSP

"My brothers, all of you, if you are condemned to see the triumph of evil, never applaud it. Never say to evil: you are good; to decadence: you are progess; to death: you are life. Sanctify yourselves in the times wherein God has placed you; bewail the evils and the disorders which God tolerates; oppose them with the energy of your works and your efforts, your life uncontaminated by error, free from being led astray, in such a way that having lived here below, united with the Spirit of the Lord, you will be admitted to be made but one with Him forever and ever: But he who is joined to the Lord is one in spirit." Cardinal Pie of Potiers
 
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Offline spasiisochrani

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Greek Catholics in Russia and Ukraine use the Julian calendar, just as the Orthodox do, because that's the local custom.
 

Offline The Harlequin King

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Since the ultimate purpose of the liturgical calendar is to allow people to worship in common with others, and there are no Catholic communities which use the Julian calendar (to my knowledge) I would say there's no benefit to going solo with the Julian calendar here. This ventures away from the realm of tradition into hipsterdom.
 
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Offline The Harlequin King

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Greek Catholics in Russia and Ukraine use the Julian calendar, just as the Orthodox do, because that's the local custom.

They do? Well, if this is the case, then I can see a point to following the Julian calendar for anyone who belongs to one of these groups. When I visited the Russian Catholic church in Manhattan, they used the Gregorian, to my knowledge. So I assumed that was the case everywhere.
 

Offline Edmundia

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As far as I know the Ukranian Catholic Church in Canada use the Julian Calendar, as does the Ukranian Greek Catholic Church in Australia and New Zealand and so following a particular calendar cannot be a test of faith, any more than "modern" Catholics who claim that a Traditional Mass celebrated on the real feast and not on the Sunday following (as happens in some countries) Novus Ordo style, would be out of Communion. Likewise the traditional Dominicans who have a slightly different calendar and a different rite of Mass could be "out".
 

Offline aquinas138

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The Julian Calendar is now off 13 days behind the Gregorian Calendar, which means that their March 21, does not occur until 13 days after the Vernal Equinox, which means that their Easter will also be off by 13 days. This "lag" of days will only increase over time.

Actually, because of the vagaries of the moon, Julian Easter can be up to six weeks later than the Gregorian. In most years the Julian is one week later, as it was this year and will be again next year. But in 2021, Gregorian Easter will be April 4, but Julian Easter will be May 2. In recent decades, the two Easters coincide about two years out of every six; this will gradually become less common. Also, in the year 2100, the Julian calendar will fall 14 days behind the Gregorian.
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Offline spasiisochrani

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As far as I know the Ukranian Catholic Church in Canada use the Julian Calendar, as does the Ukranian Greek Catholic Church in Australia and New Zealand

That's true about Canada, of my personal knowledge.  Where I live (Cleveland, Ohio), one of the Ukrainian Catholic parishes uses the Julian calendar, and the rest use the Gregorian.
 

Offline Michael Wilson

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The Julian Calendar is now off 13 days behind the Gregorian Calendar, which means that their March 21, does not occur until 13 days after the Vernal Equinox, which means that their Easter will also be off by 13 days. This "lag" of days will only increase over time.

Actually, because of the vagaries of the moon, Julian Easter can be up to six weeks later than the Gregorian. In most years the Julian is one week later, as it was this year and will be again next year. But in 2021, Gregorian Easter will be April 4, but Julian Easter will be May 2. In recent decades, the two Easters coincide about two years out of every six; this will gradually become less common. Also, in the year 2100, the Julian calendar will fall 14 days behind the Gregorian.
Yes, conceivably with the passage of time, those using the Julian Calendar would end up celebrating Chritmas in March and Easter in June and so forth.
"The World Must Conform to Our Lord and not He to it." Rev. Dennis Fahey CSSP

"My brothers, all of you, if you are condemned to see the triumph of evil, never applaud it. Never say to evil: you are good; to decadence: you are progess; to death: you are life. Sanctify yourselves in the times wherein God has placed you; bewail the evils and the disorders which God tolerates; oppose them with the energy of your works and your efforts, your life uncontaminated by error, free from being led astray, in such a way that having lived here below, united with the Spirit of the Lord, you will be admitted to be made but one with Him forever and ever: But he who is joined to the Lord is one in spirit." Cardinal Pie of Potiers
 

Offline sedmohradsko

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Actually, because of the vagaries of the moon, Julian Easter can be up to six weeks later than the Gregorian. In most years the Julian is one week later, as it was this year and will be again next year. But in 2021, Gregorian Easter will be April 4, but Julian Easter will be May 2. In recent decades, the two Easters coincide about two years out of every six; this will gradually become less common. Also, in the year 2100, the Julian calendar will fall 14 days behind the Gregorian.

I've noticed that Julian Easter is significantly later any time Gregorian Easter falls in March or the first few days of April.  Then Julian Easter tends to be at the end of April or the beginning of May.  If Gregorian Easter falls towards the middle of April, Julian is usually only a week or two later.  Finally, while Gregorian and Julian Easter can fall on the same Sunday at the beginning, middle or end of April, we tend to share the same date if Gregorian Easter is in the end of April - rarely if it is in the beginning of April.
 

Offline sedmohradsko

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That's true about Canada, of my personal knowledge.  Where I live (Cleveland, Ohio), one of the Ukrainian Catholic parishes uses the Julian calendar, and the rest use the Gregorian.

Holy Resurrection Monastery in Wisconsin (Romanian eparchy) is also on the Julian calendar.  I was informed by one of the monks there that their bishop is encouraging all parishes in his eparchy to adopt the Julian calendar.  In the US, I believe it is more common for Ukrainian parishes to be on the Julian calendar if they are in the Parma eparchy.

St. Elias, a Ukrainian parish outside of Toronto, formerly was on the Julian calendar fully.  A few years ago, they changed to being on the Julian calendar for the Paschal cycle, and Gregorian for fixed feasts.
 

Offline Daniel

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I don't get it. The "real" feast day is whatever day astronomy (and Church legislation) says it is. So if the Gregorian calendar is astronomically more accurate, then why should any Catholic switch back to the less-accurate Julian calendar? You wouldn't be celebrating the feast on the "real" feast day... you'd be doing the exact opposite.

Is this more of a cultural thing? Certain peoples have been using the Julian for so long that it's become part of their heritage and they don't want to give it up, lest they risk losing their cultural identity? And some want to restore the old calendar where it has already been lost?


Though, I kind of wonder what's up with the winter solstice. Supposedly it used to coincide with Christmas... but now it occurs on December 21st? If the Gregorian calendar is accurate then why has the winter solstice drifted by a few days over the past two thousand years? Or am I just completely mixed up... has it always been on December 21st?
« Last Edit: August 29, 2019, 08:23:24 PM by Daniel »
 

Offline aquinas138

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I don't get it. The "real" feast day is whatever day astronomy (and Church legislation) says it is. So if the Gregorian calendar is astronomically more accurate, then why should any Catholic switch back to the less-accurate Julian calendar? You wouldn't be celebrating the feast on the "real" feast day... you'd be doing the exact opposite.

Is this more of a cultural thing? Certain peoples have been using the Julian for so long that it's become part of their heritage and they don't want to give it up, lest they risk losing their cultural identity? And some want to restore the old calendar where it has already been lost?


Though, I kind of wonder what's up with the winter solstice. Supposedly it used to coincide with Christmas... but now it occurs on December 21st? If the Gregorian calendar is accurate then why has the winter solstice drifted by a few days over the past two thousand years? Or am I just completely mixed up... has it always been on December 21st?

In a situation like Ukraine (or other majority Orthodox/Oriental Orthodox countries), it makes some sense for Ukrainian Greek Catholics to celebrate their feasts on the same day as the Orthodox. A forced move to a different calendar undercuts the Catholic Church's position that Ukrainian Greek Catholics can be in communion with Rome and maintain their own traditions.
O unashamed intercessor of Christians, ever loyal advocate before the Creator, do not disregard the prayerful voice of sinners but in your goodness hasten to assist us who trustfully cry out to you: Intercede always, O Mother of God, in behalf of those who honor you!