Thursday Night Football Saturday. Hey! Wait a minute!

Transferring important Feasts, such as Ascension Thursday, to a Sunday is a Really Bad Idea.

Ascension Thursday Sunday? What sense does that make?

But wait! There’s more.

Who knew that the officially sanctioned watering down of our Catholic identity in the transfer of feasts would metastasize beyond the Church?

From SBNation:

thursday footballThursday Night Football: Saturday Edition’ is the dumbest thing we’ve seen recently

It is not Thursday. It is not night. We acknowledge it is football. But that means you’re 1-for-3. [Sounding familiar?]

THURSDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL: SATURDAY EDITION does not make sense. Because, you know, just call it Saturday night football. I mean, it’s not even night. It’s bright out. [These guys get it.  But our guys?  Noooo.]

This would kinda make sense if Thursday Night Football was immensely popular, a beloved brand everybody across the country was passionate about and excited to see more of. But it’s not, really. Everyone kinda hates Thursday Night Football. Players complain they only had three rest days and cite a higher risk of injury on short play. Although fans like an extra night of football, many notice that without a full week of practice, games are a bit sloppier. Everybody generally acknowledges that Thursday Night Football is just a way for the NFL to make more money. Why would you want to associate more football with something everyone hates?

We’d criticize CBS/NFL Network for being lazy and not making extra graphics… except they kinda did make extra graphic, just awkward Thursday Night Football Saturday Edition graphics:



When Ascension, and other great feasts, is bumped to Sunday, the signal sent is that the feast just isn’t all that important and, as a bonus, that being lazy and not planning around your Faith is just fine.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Fr. Matthew says:

    “When Ascension, and other great feasts, is bumped to Sunday, the signal sent is that the feast just isn’t all that important and, as a bonus, that being lazy and not planning around your Faith is just fine.”

    It also says that history doesn’t matter. Imagine remembering Pearl Harbor other than December 7, or 9/11 on other than 9/11 — ridiculous, of course, because these are historical facts. The Ascension is historical fact, and moving it to something other that Ascension Thursday tells the faithful that it is something other than a event that happened in history. Gosh, we don’t move Easter around, why Ascension?

  2. jlduskey says:

    Many years ago, back when college football ended at the end of November, and NFL football ended in mid-December, the NFL and the TV networks noticed that there was no football on TV in the first two weeks of December. Thus, they started having two Saturday telecasts on each of the last two weeks of the NFL season. Nothing abnormal about that. Things got confusing when college football extended into December, and NFL football extended to the end of December. But we still have two Saturdays at the end of the regular NFL season with national telecasts. (To eliminate those extra national telecasts would cause a decrease in TV revenue!) They could make it easier by simply saying “NFL on CBS” or “NFL on FOX.”
    As far as the Church goes, the feast of the Ascension is on Thursday. They shouldn’t play with words by saying it is on Sunday. But, in the old days, we always had the “Sunday within the octave of the Ascension” and after they removed the octave, we called it “Sunday after Ascension.” Nowadays, we use the term “external solemnity to describe the “Sunday after…” and we do this for Corpus Christi and several other major feasts. I suppose you could celebrate Corpus Christi on any day so decreed. But, you’re right, the Ascension is an historical event. It makes no sense to move it and pretend it happened on some other day.

  3. The laity has a sense of inferring many things (good or bad) from the actions of its Church. The laity, because they are not always told outright, begins to imply certain modes of thinking to other aspects of our Faith when it observes the Church demonstrating what seems like indifference to Holy Days of Obligation. There is the message to most observers that transferring these Feast Days signifies that the Church must also believe that the laity should likewise yield their Faith to the Times in other aspects of our lives: things like contraception, defense of life, elections, charitable acts, views on marriage, etc. The actions of our Church sends a ripple effect through the Faithful. It implies that the Church downplays time spent with Our Savior on Holy Days and, subsequently, also must approve downplaying His Divine Teachings to favor the zeitgeist instead of the Faith.

    Actions speak louder than words. The repeated, year after year gestures of moving these Feasts to accommodate our modern world’s lifestyles essentially cancels out all the words ever written by the popes, the Saints, and the mystics on how we should prioritize our lives. It doesn’t matter how many encyclicals the Church has written, how many epistles were written, how many instructions, or books etc. were recorded to instruct the laity how we should orient our hearts when the actions of the Church these writings represent are canceled out by the actions of yielding the Faith to the World.

  4. Father Z,

    I am simply glad to know that I am not alone in finding the peculiar naming of the programs inane (at best). I had begun to fear that I was simply becoming ever more curmudgeonly as I near the beginning of my 7th decade on this orb.

    Pax et bonum,
    Keith Töpfer

  5. The Masked Chicken says:

    This last Thanksgiving someone tried to explain this concept to me. Where, but in America? I find it ironic that so many young people are striving to enter a sport that, statistically, produces a disproportionate number of brain injuries and dementia. Ah, the love of money…

    The Chicken

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