My friend Fr. Tim Finigan, His Hermeueticalness, has on his parish’s website a good reminder for his readers in the UK that Friday 29 June, the Feast or Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul is, for them, a Holy Day of Obligation. Since I have quite a few readers across the pond, it seemed a good idea to help H.H. with this reminder.
Moreover, a plenary indulgence may be gained on Sts. Peter and Paul, under the usual conditions. Fr. Finigan describes the conditions: by devoutly praying with a pious object (rosary, holy card etc.) which has been blessed by the Pope or any Bishop, or by visiting a (Catholic) Cathedral Church. In either case, the Our Father and the Creed should be said.
Also, Sts Peter and Paul is a on the post-Conciliar liturgical calendar “Solemnity”. Therefore, people in England and Wales are free if they wish to eat meat on that Friday. Fr. Finigan adds: “It would be a devout practice (though not obligatory) to abstain from meat on the day before, on the Vigil of the feast.” Fr. Z nods approvingly.
For an explanation of indulgences, see the Catechism of the Catholic Church n.1471 ff.
For an explanation of the conditions for gaining a plenary indulgence, see fr. Finigan’s article Plenary indulgences not impossible.
In the United States, we observe six Holy Days of Obligation in addition to all Sundays of the Year (yes, Sundays are “days of precept”).
- Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God
- The Ascension of Our Lord
- The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
- All Saints Day
- The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception
The Latin Church’s 1983 Code of Canon Law lists 10 Holy Days of Obligation. However, bishops’ conferences can reduce that number. In the USA, some days are routinely moved to Sunday, such as Epiphany and Corpus Christi – which is a bad idea, but they didn’t ask me. The US bishops removed the obligation – and this was also a bad idea -for St. Joseph, and Sts. Peter and Paul.