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Holy Days & Holidays

*Local or regional customs may use a variation of this date. 
Bold titles
are the faith tradition.

August, 2019 - July, 2020 - Holy Days and Holidays

 

AUGUST 2019

  • 1
    - Lughnasadh Pagan: Celebration of midpoint between solstice and equinox marking first harvest.
  • 6
    - Erev Tu Be’Av
  • 7
    - Tu Be’Av Jewish: Holiday of love

 

  • 10
    - Erev Tisha Be’Av
    - Day of Arafah Hajj Islam: Day of assembly on the plain of Arafah in Hajj.  Optional day of fasting for non-pilgrims

 

  • 11
    - Tisha Be’Av Jewish: Fast day mourning the destruction of both Temples in Jerusalem, and other devastations in Jewish history

 

  • 11 - 14
    - Eid al Adha Sacrifice Day Islam: Muslim celebration honoring the spiritual sacrifice of his son by prophet Abraham
  • 13 - 15
    - Obon* Buddhist and Shinto: Japanese Buddhist festival to honor ancestors

 

  • 15
    - Assumption of Mary Christian: celebration of assumption of Mary into heaven, Holy day of obligation for Catholics
    - Raksha Bandhan* Hindu: Festival honoring family ties between brothers and sisters
  • 24
    - Krishna Janmashtami* Hindu: Festival celebrating the birth of Lord Krishna, the 8th avatar (incarnation) of Vishnu. He exhorted the epic poem “Gita” to Arjun
  • 27 - Sept. 3
    - Paryushana Parva* Jain: Eight Day Jain festival of devotion
  • 31
     - Hijra - New Year Islam: Muslim new year, marking the emigration of the Prophet Muhammad from Makkah to Madinah 622 CE

 

SEPTEMBER 2019

  • 2
    - Ganesh Chaturthi * Hindu: Festival honoring Lord Ganesh
  • 9
    - Ashura Islam: Muslim commemoration of Prophet Moses delivering his people from Pharaoh (a day of optional fasting accompanied with a day of fasting before [08] and/or after [September 10] and of trials endured by leaders among Prophet Muhammad’s family
  • 23
    - Mabon Pagan: Observance of autumn equinox and harvest festival
  • 28
    - Birth of Confucius: Observed in all religious traditions emanating from China
  • 29
    - Erev Rosh Hashanah Jewish: Eve of the Jewish New Year and beginning of High Holy Days (begins at sundown)*
    - Navaratri begins* Hindu: Nine-night festival worshiping different forms of the Goddess Shakti
  • 30
    - Rosh Hashanah Jewish: New Year

 

OCTOBER 2019

  • 1
    - Rosh Hashanah Jewish: New Year
  • 7
    - Navaratri ends* Hindu: Nine-night festival worshiping different forms of the Goddess Shakti
  • 8
    - Dussehra* Hindu: Celebration of the victory of Lord Rama over demon Ravan. Also known as Vijayadashami
    - Erev Yom Kippur Jewish: Eve of the Day of Atonement, observed with fasting (begins at sundown)
  • 9
    - Yom Kippur Jewish: Day of Atonement, observed with fasting
  • 13
    - Erev Sukkot
  • 14
    - Indigenous People’s Day: Interfaith celebration of cultural heritage of indigenous peoples of Western hemisphere
  • 14 - 20
    - Sukkot Jewish: Eight-day remembrance of God’s protection during time in the wilderness.  Observed by eating in a temporary hut called a “sukkah.” (Begins at sundown on October 13, concludes on October 21)
  • 15
     - Bodhidharma Day Zen Buddhist: Honors Zen ancestor Bodhidharma who brought Zen from India to China
  • 20
    - Installation of Scriptures as Guru Granth Sahib Sikh: Installation of the Guru Granth Sahib. Recognition of Sikh sacred writings as the final, eternal guru
    - Erev Shemini Atzeret
  • 21
    - Shemini Atzeret Jewish: Eighth-day festival connected to Sukkot (begins at sundown on October 20)
    - Erev Simchat Torah
  • 22
    - Simchat Torah Jewish: Day of rejoicing to celebrate the yearly completion of reading the whole Torah (begins at sundown on October 21)
  • 27
    - Bandi‐Chhor Diwas* Sikh: A commemorative celebrates the release of the Sixth Guru Har Gobind Sahib Ji from imprisonment
    - Diwali (Deepavali)* Hindu: The main day of the five-day festival of lights, celebration of light over darkness, new beginnings and triumph of goodness
  • 29
    - Birth of The Báb Bahá’í: Commemoration of the birth of the Báb (The "Gate"), the Prophet-Herald of the Bahá’í faith
    - New Year Jain: Celebration of the new year
  • 30
    - Birth of Bahá'u'lláh Bahá’í: Commemoration of the birth of Bahá'u'lláh (translated ‘Glory of God’), the Prophet-Founder of the Bahá’í faith
  • 31
    - All Hallows Eve Christian: Celebration derived from Celtic Samhain, beginning two-day remembrance of the dead
    - Samhain Pagan: Observance of midpoint between equinox and solstice, descent into depths of winter

NOVEMBER 2019

  • 1
    - All Saints Day Christian: Celebration of lives of the saints. Holy day of obligation for Catholics
  • 2
    - All Souls Day/Dia de los Muertos Christian: Day of interceding for those who have died
  • 9
    - Mawlid al-Nabi Islam: (begins sundown on November 20) The day that commemorates the birth of the last Prophet of Islam, Muhammad c.570 CE
  • 12
    - Guru Nanak Dev Gurpurab (Guru Nanak’s Birthday) Sikh: Birth of the founder and first guru of the Sikh faith
  • 26
    - Day of The Covenant Bahá’í: The day when Bahá'ís celebrate the appointment of `Abdu'l-Bahá as the Centre of Bahá'u'lláh’s Covenant
  • 28
    - Ascension of 'Abdu'l-Bahá’ Bahá’í: Commemoration the ascension of `Abdu'l-Bahá who passed away on November 28, 1921, in Haifa, Palestine (now Israel)
    - Thanksgiving Interfaith USA

  

DECEMBER 2019

  • 6
    - Saint Nicholas Day Christian: Feast of saint popularly known as Santa Claus for his generosity
  • 8
    - Immaculate Conception Christian: Catholic day of celebrating the belief that Mary, mother of Jesus, was preserved from original sin all of her life. Holy day of obligation
    - Bodhi Day* Buddhist: Celebration of beginning of path to enlightenment of the Buddha
  • 12
     - Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe Christian: Catholic celebration of Mary as patron saint of Mexico
  • 16 - 25
    - Posadas Navidenas Christian: Mexican Catholic reenactment of journey of Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem
  • 21 
    - Remembrance Vigil for Pan Am 103 Interfaith: Syracuse University service of remembrance for the victims of Pan Am 103
  • 22
    - Yule Pagan: Observance of rebirth of the sun after longest night of winter
  • 22-30
    - Hanukkah Jewish: Eight-night Jewish festival of lights remembering Maccabean victory and rededication of Temple in 165 BCE. (First candle is lit at sundown on December 22.  Holiday concludes at nightfall on December 30)
  • 23
    - Human Light: Secular celebration of humanist vision of peace and goodwill among all 
  • 24
    - Christmas Eve Christian: Eve of traditional Western date observing birth of Christ in twelve-day festival lasting to Epiphany  
  • 25
    - Christmas Christian: Traditional Western date observing birth of Christ in twelve-day festival lasting to Epiphany
  • 26
    - First Day of Kwanzaa: Weeklong celebration of African American life and cultural heritage 
    - Zarathosht Diso* Zoroastrian Death of founding prophet Zarathushtra 
  • 31
    - Watch Night Christian: Ritual service of preparation for the year to come
    - Holy Family Christian: Catholic celebration of the love between the family of Jesus

  

JANUARY 2020

  • 1
    - Mary, Mother of God Christian: Catholic day of prayer and thanksgiving to Mary, mother of Jesus
    - Gantan-sai Shinto new year festival
    - Basil the Great Orthodox Christian: Celebration of defender of orthodoxy Basil of Caesarea
  • 2
    - Guru Gobind Singh Jayanti Sikh: Celebration of the birth of the final human guru of the Sikh faith
  • 6
    - Epiphany Christian: Festival celebrating the revelation of God in Jesus and the visit of the sages to the Christ child
    - Feast of the Nativity Orthodox Christian: Traditional celebration of Christmas for Eastern Orthodox Christians
  • 7
    - Fast of Tevet 10 Jewish: Day of mourning and repentance marking the beginning of the siege of Jerusalem. In recent years, it also is a day of remembrance for the victims of the Holocaust
  • 13
     - Baptism of the Lord Jesus Christian: Commemoration of the beginning of the public ministry of Jesus
  • 14
    - Makar Sankranti* Hindu: Festival honoring the Sun, the main source of energy to our planet
  • 15
    - Maghi Sikh: Commemoration of the 40 martyrs (Chalis Mukte) who died fighting the Mughal army with Guru Gobind Singh in 1705 CE
  • 18 - 25
    - Week of Prayer for Christian Unity Christian: Seven days of ecumenical prayer
  • 30
    - Vasant Panchami* Hindu: Festival honoring Saraswati, goddess of learning, wisdom, music, and art

FEBRUARY 2020

  • 2
    - Imbolc Pagan: Feast of waxing light, midpoint between solstice and equinox 
    - Candlemas Christian: Celebration of the presentation of Jesus in the temple.  New beginnings are recognized
  • 3
    - Setsebun sai* Shinto: Celebration of approach of spring as invitation to good fortune
    - Four Chaplains Sunday Interfaith: Commemoration of the event in World War II when four Chaplains of Jewish and Christian traditions (Catholic and Protestant) gave their life jackets to others as a troop ship sank in the Atlantic Ocean
  • 8
    - Chinese New Year Confucian, Daoist, Buddhist: Beginning of Chinese celebration of a new year for people of all religions
  • 9
    - Erev Tu Bishvat
  • 10
    - Tu BiShvat Jewish: Celebration of the New Year of the Trees (Begins at sundown on February 9)
  • 14
    - St. Valentine's Day Christian: Festival of love loosely connected to Christian saint
  • 15
    - Nirvana Day* Buddhist, Jain: Commemoration of passing into Nirvana of the Buddha
  • 22
    - Maha Shivaratri* Hindu: Festival in honor of Lord Shiva
  • 25
     - Shrove Tuesday/Mardi Gras Christian: Day of preparation for Lent, observed by feasting and carnival activities
  • 25 – 29
    - Ayyám-i-Há Bahá’í: Intercalary days in the Bahá'í calendar, when Bahá'í celebrate the Festival of Ayyám-i-Há (also known as ‘Days of Gift-Giving’)
  • 26
    - Ash Wednesday Christian: First of forty days of Western Christian penitential observance of Lent

MARCH 2020

  • 1 - 19
    - The Bahá’í Fast Bahá’í: Abstain from food and drinks between sunrise and sunset
  • 2
    - Clean Monday Orthodox Christian: First day of Lent
  • 8
     - Orthodox Sunday Orthodox Christian: First Sunday of Lent. Restoration of icons to the church is celebrated
  • 9
    - Erev Purim
    - Fast of Esther Jewish: Day preceding Purim that commemorates the fast Esther requested the Jewish people observe in preparation of her going to see the King uninvited
    - Holika Dahan* Hindu: Bonfire representing the power of devotion to get rid of evil
  • 10
    - Purim Jewish: Holiday marking deliverance from Haman's genocidal plot against Jewish people in ancient Persia as related in Book of Esther (Begins on March 9 at sundown)
    - Holi* Hindu: Colorful festival of spring
  • 17
    - Saint Patrick’s Day Christian: Celebration of Patrick, who brought Christianity to Ireland
  • 19
    - St. Joseph's Day Christian: Celebration of St. Joseph, foster father of Jesus
  • 20
    - Ostara Pagan: Spring equinox festival celebrating reawakening
    - Naw-Rúz Bahá’í: New Year (176 Baha'i Era)
  • 22
    - Lailat al Miraj Islam: The day that commemorates the Prophet Muhammad's nighttime journey, in 622 CE, to Heaven to meet with God and to meet with his fellow Prophets like Abraham and Moses
  • 23
    - Magha Puja Day* Buddhist: Commemoration of presentation of Buddha to the world

 

 

 

APRIL 2020

  • 2
    - Ramanavami* Hindu: Celebration of the birth of Lord Rama, seventh incarnation of Vishnu
  • 5
    - Palm Sunday Christian: Beginning of Western Christian Holy Week, also known as Palm Sunday of the Passion
  • 6
    - Mahavir Jayanti* Jain: Birth of founder of Jain tradition Mahavira 540 BCE
  • 8         
    - Vesak Buddhist: Celebrates the Birth of Shakyamuni Buddha
    - Erev Pesach
    - First Seder
  • 9
    - Maundy Thursday Christian: Remembrance of Christ’s last supper. First day of the Sacred Triduum
    - Lailat al Bara'ah/Nisf Sha’ban Islam: (night of April 08) Optional Night of prayer
  • 9 - 16
    - Pesach (Passover) Jewish: Eight-day commemoration of freedom of the Israelites from Egyptian slavery. (Begins with First Seder at sundown on April 8.  Second Seder begins at nightfall on April 9.  Holiday concludes at nightfall on April 16) 
  • 10
    - Good Friday Christian: Remembrance of the crucifixion and death of Christ. Second day of the Sacred Triduum
  • 11
    - Holy Saturday Christian: Day of vigil culminating in observance of resurrection of Christ. Third day of the Sacred Triduum
    - Lazarus Saturday Orthodox Christian
  • 12
    - Easter Christian: Feast of resurrection of Christ
    - Palm Sunday Orthodox Christian
  • 13
    - Baisakhi (Vaisakhi) Sikh: Commemoration of the day in 1699 that Guru Gobind Singh Ji, the 10th Guru, removed the clerical system from Sikhism and affirmed the direct connection between Sikhs and the Divine
  • 17
    - Holy Friday Orthodox Christian: Anniversary of the death of Christ, as commemorated by Orthodox Christians
  • 19
    - Pascha (Easter) Orthodox Christian: Celebration of the resurrection of Christ, beginning at midnight
  • 20
    - 1st Day of Ridván Bahá’í: Celebration of the day Baha’u’llah arrived at the Garden of Ridván
  • 21
    - Yom Ha’Shoah Jewish: Holocaust Remembrance Day (begins at sundown on April 20)
  • 24
    - Ramadan Islam: (begins at sundown on April 23) Muslim Holy month of daily fasting (from dawn to sunset) and nightly prayers begins
  • 28         
    - Ninth Day of Ridván Bahá’í: Celebration of the day Baha’u’llah declared the Mission and Purpose of the Baha’i Faith

 

 

MAY 2020

  • 1
    - Beltane Pagan: Celebration of midpoint between equinox and solstice, celebrating Earth’s fertility
    - 12th Day of Ridván Bahá’í: Commemoration of the day Baha’u’llah departed from the Garden of Ridván and continued His exile
  • 11
    - Erev Lag Ba’Omer
  • 12
     - Lag Ba'Omer Jewish: Celebration of the 33 day of counting the Omer - a 49-day period between Pesach and Shavout. (Begins at sundown on May 11)
  • 13 – 22
     - Laylatul Qadr - The Night of Destiny Islam: (begins sundown on 13) Muslim commemoration of the Holy Night, in Ramadan, when the Qur`an was revealed.  It can fall on any of the 10 nights and these nights are spent in worship, prayers, and supplications. This night is also when the destiny of all things is determined for the coming year
  • 19
    - 27th night of Ramadan
  • 21
    - Ascension of the Lord Christian: Festival marking the bodily ascension of Jesus into Heaven
  • 23
    - Declaration of The Báb Bahá’í: Celebration of the day when The Báb announced He was "the bearer of a Divine Revelation which would prepare humanity for the advent of the Promised One of all religions"
  • 24
    - Eid al Fitr - Festival of the Completion of the Fast/End of Ramadan Islam: (begins sundown on May 23) Muslim celebration showing gratitude for a successful completion of fasting in the Holy month of Ramadan. The day begins with a distribution of charity to the needy the night before (23), followed by morning prayer services the next day (24) and gatherings with family, friends, and relatives
  • 28
     - Erev Shavuot
     - Ascension of Bahá'u'lláh Bahá’í: Commemoration of the ascension of Bahá'u'lláh, the Prophet-Founder of the Bahá’í faith
  • 29 - 30
    - Shavuot Jewish: Festival of receiving the Torah at Mt. Sinai. (begins at sundown on May 28 and concludes at nightfall on May 30)
  • 31
    - Pentecost Christian: Celebration of the descent of Holy Spirit upon followers of Christ

  

JUNE 2020

  • 7
    -
    Trinity Sunday Christian: Honors the belief in one God with a threefold nature
    - Pentecost Orthodox Christian

 

JULY 2020

  • 9
     - Martyrdom of the Báb Bahá’í: The Báb, forerunner of Baha'u'llah, was publicly executed for announcing the nearing arrival of the Promised One, and the prophesied dawn of a new day
  • 29
    -
     Erev Tisha Be’Av

 

  • 30
    -
     Tisha Be’Av Jewish: Fast day mourning the destruction of both Temples in Jerusalem, and other devastations in Jewish history
    - Day of Arafah Hajj Islam: Day of assembly on the plain of Arafah in Hajj.  Optional day of fasting for non-pilgrims

 

  • 31
    - Eid al Adha Sacrifice Day Islam: Muslim celebration honoring the spiritual sacrifice of his son by prophet Abraham