Paschal candle
The announcement of the year’s liturgical calendar is made after the Gospel reading in the Mass of the Epiphany. The Council of Nicaea (AD 325) is said to have formalised the tradition — which was ancient even then — of the Patriarch of Alexandria’s mission to send the date of the Paschal solemnity to other Eastern Patriarchs and to the Roman Pontiff, who was then to inform the metropolitans of the West. The customary proclamation is called the Noveritis after the first word in Latin, and it’s sung to the same tone as the Exsultet in the Easter Vigil, giving a taste of the Easter joy to this publication of the date of Easter.

Know, dear brothers and sisters, that, as we have rejoiced at the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, so by leave of God’s mercy we announce to you also the joy of his Resurrection, who is our Saviour.

On the seventeenth day of February will fall the Sunday of Septuagesima.

On the sixth day of March will fall Ash Wednesday and the beginning of the fast of the most sacred Lenten season.

On the twenty-first day of April you will celebrate with joy Easter Day, the Paschal feast of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

On the thirtieth day of May will be the Ascension of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

On the ninth day of June, the feast of Pentecost.

On the twenty-third day of that month, the feast of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ.

On the first day of December, the First Sunday of Advent of Our Lord Jesus Christ, to whom be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.