St Anne's & St Joseph's RC Parish

——  Accrington • Diocese of Salford  ——

St Anne's & St Joseph's
RC Parish

—  Accrington • Diocese of Salford  —



Eeeee. ‘ave ur seen what he’s wearing now? The question is sometimes asked why do priests wear rose coloured vestments on the Third Sunday in Advent? I know, everyone says “because it is Gaudete Sunday.” But what does that mean?

On one Sunday each, in Advent and Lent, Roman Catholic priests have the option of wearing a rose chasuble. On the Third Sunday of Advent and the Fourth Sunday of Lent, rose vestments are worn to represent the joyful reward that comes from offering sacrifice with patience. This is for the intention of offering “a reprieve” in the penitential nature of these two liturgical seasons. (Although the season of Advent no longer holds the same penitential nature that it once did, it still retains its colours to represent these principles).

Yes, indeed, the colour is rose, not pink, strictly speaking. The colour pink has a connotation of a weaker red colour, whereas, the colour rose provides the proper sense of penitential attitude and joyful anticipation. This liturgical colour has developed over many years as representative of a white and violet mixture; a mixture of the joyful celebration of heaven with the penitential nature of this life.       

The Third Sunday of Advent is known as “Gaudete Sunday” or “Rejoice Sunday.” One is reminded of St. Paul’s Letter to the Philippians for this Sunday, which reads, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say, rejoice. Indeed, the Lord is near” (Phil 4:4-5).

On this Sunday, one is encouraged because the birth of the Lord is growing closer. “Gaudete Sunday” is marked with rose colours (both the vestments and the Advent candle itself) to represent that, as Christians, we believe that penance is not without purpose. Christ suffered and defeated death with his resurrection, in much the same way Christians remember that the power of Christ is present whenever sacrifice is offered.

The faithful do not suffer apart from the passion and resurrection of Jesus. Thus, the Church in her wisdom has given us special days during penitential seasons to remind the faithful that our penances are for the express purpose of joining with Christ in his resurrection. May all who anticipate the coming of Christ in his incarnation remember this fact.


St Anne’s, Cobham Road,
Accrington, BB5 2AD.
Tel: 01254 232 920

St Joseph’s, Belgarth Road,
Accrington, BB5 6AH.


Rev Fr Francis Wadsworth (parish priest)
Rev Fr Robert Livesey (retired)

Parish Administrator

Mrs Siobhan Wood
Tel: 01254 232 920

Office Hours

Mon: 8:30am to 12:30pm
Tues, Thurs: 8:30am to 1:30pm