Which are the holydays of obligation in the USA?

  • January 1: The Feast of Mary, the Mother of God.
  • 40 days after Easter Sunday: Ascension Thursday.
  • August 15: Assumption of Mary into heaven.
  • November 1: All Saints' Day.
  • December 8: The Feast of the Immaculate Conception.
  • December 25: Christmas, the Nativity of Our Lord.

Remember: Holy days are like Sundays in that Catholics must attend Mass, and if possible, refrain from unnecessary servile work. Some Catholic countries, such as Italy, Spain, and Ireland, give legal holiday status to some of these holy days, so people can attend Mass and be with family instead of at work.

In the United States, Christmas Day (December 25) and the Immaculate Conception (December 8) are always days of obligation. Christmas and Easter (which always falls on Sunday) are the highest-ranking holy days, and the Immaculate Conception is the feast for the United States. However, if any of the other holy days falls on a Saturday or Monday, they aren’t considered holy days of obligation, because they’re back-to-back with Sunday. The concern is that it would be burdensome to many Catholics to have to go to church two days in a row.