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The Christian Calendar

(Also called the Liturgical Calendar, which simply means a calendar of worship.)

The church year follows a different schedule than the calendar hanging on your wall. It is separated into seasons centering on events in the life of Jesus. Although the details vary from tradition to tradition, it is a rhythm that has been followed by churches all over the world for centuries. It is a rhythm that shapes our worship and connects us to all of God's people. Following are the liturgical seasons that shape our worship:

  • Advent: preparing for the birth of Jesus, and also expectantly waiting for his second coming
  • Christmastide: celebrating Jesus' birth
  • Epiphany: the time between Christmastide and Lent, celebrating the ways Jesus was revealed to us
  • Ash Wednesday: the first day of Lent; a day of penitence
  • Lent: the 40 days before Easter (not counting Sundays) focused on spiritual disciplines
  • Palm Sunday: the celebration of Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem before his trial and death
  • Maundy Thursday: celebrating Jesus' last supper with his disciples
  • Good Friday: commemorating Jesus' death
  • Easter Vigil: commemorating Jesus' time in the tomb - a time of expectant waiting
  • Easter: celebrating Jesus' resurrection
  • Ascension Day: celebrating Jesus' going to heaven
  • Pentecost: celebrating the coming of the Holy Spirit to the disciples
  • Ordinary* Time: a time without a particular season, ending with "Christ the King" Sunday
(*coming from the word "ordinal" as in "counted" because traditionally the Sundays are numbered after Pentecost)
Graphic of the seasons of the liturgical year

Image from GodSpace

2023-2024 Christian Year

Advent: December 3 - 24, 2023

Christmas: December 25

Christmastide: December 25 - January 5, 2024

Epiphany: January 6

Season of Epiphany: January 7 - February 11

Ash Wednesday: February 14

Lent: Wednesday, February 18 - March 28

Palm Sunday: March 24

Maundy Thursday: March 28

Good Friday: March 29

Easter Vigil: March 30

Easter: March 31

Eastertide: April 9 - May 12

Ascension Day: May 9

Pentecost: May 19

Ordinary Time: May 26 - November 24

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