I cover local news here at GetReligion so I thought I would do a wrap-up of local news coverage of today’s holy day.
Which holy day? Ascension.
It’s one of the great feasts in the Christian liturgical calendar, and commemorates the bodily Ascension of Jesus into Heaven. In Roman Catholicism the Ascension of the Lord is a Holy Day of Obligation. Anglicans and Lutherans mark it. In the Eastern Orthodox Church the Ascension is one of 12 Great Feasts. In the Eastern Church, however, Ascension is marked using a different calendar. They will celebrate June 1.
The only problem is that I could not find any mention of this in mainstream newspapers. There were a few stories in Roman Catholic journals but nothing anywhere else. Please do let me know if your local paper had anything.
Covering this holy day, which is very important for Christians who celebrate the liturgical calendar, would certainly be difficult for reporters. It’s not a state holiday like it is in Germany, Scandinavia and the Netherlands. Unlike Christmas or Easter, there aren’t family celebrations surrounding the feast. There’s no consumerism associated with the day — thank God — so we don’t see cards or decorations in stores.
Still, if we can get a front-page New York Times feature on naming children Nevaeh, couldn’t a few papers gives us a paragraph or two on the Feast of the Ascension?
UPDATE: Thank you, reader Patti G! She submits a story from her local paper about a Lutheran Church’s Ascension Day celebrations.