Holy days

McGill University recognizes and respects the diversity of its community, including diversity of religious faiths and observances. The University is committed to providing an environment in which its students can fulfill both their university and their religious commitments.


Faiths

The multifaith calendar is published as a service to the University community, according to Senate policy (see Chapter Seven in the Handbook of Student Rights and Responsibilities). This is not a conclusive list, and additional documentation may be requested from the student to demonstrate a religious commitment.

  • Aboriginal Spirituality

    Each band may have unique spiritual observances which, while not listed here as a holy day, may require accommodation.

  • Baha'i

  • Buddhism

    In the Western world, festivals are generally celebrated on the Sunday nearest the actual date.

  • Christianity

    The Gregorian calendar has been adopted by all Christian churches of the West. Most Eastern churches, however, continue to use the Julian calendar for religious purposes, though only a few use it exclusively. Nearly all Eastern churches still determine Easter according to the "Old Style" or Julian system, but most have adopted the "New Style" or Gregorian calendar for Christmas or Pentecost. At the present time, the Julian and Gregorian calendars are approximately 15 days out of phase.

  • Hinduism

    Specific dates may vary year to year based on the solar or lunar calendars. Dates can also vary depending on the time differential between Canada and India.

  • Islam

    Muslim holidays are based on a lunar calendar and observances may vary from the dates listed here, depending on the community. Congregation prayers are held every Friday 12:15 - 2:00 pm.

  • Judaism

    Sabbath starts Friday sundown. All holy days start sundown the night preceding the holiday.

  • Shinto

  • Sikhism

  • Wicca

    Evening observances commence at sundown. Solstice observances commence at sunrise.

  • Zoroastrianism

Holy days for the calendar year 2018

This table was compiled with the assistance of the McGill Chaplaincy Services, based on the 2018 interfaith calendar. Questions about any date provided in this multifaith calendar should be sent to degeval.es [at] mcgill.ca (Enrolment Services).

* festival begins at sundown the day before this date
** date of celebration may vary based on local customs or according to moon sightings

January
Date Faith Festival
January 1, 2018 Shinto Gantan-Sai (New Year's Day)
January 5, 2018 Sikhism Birthday Guru Gobind Singh Ji
January 6, 2018 Christianity Epiphany
January 6, 2018 Christianity (Orthodox) Feast of the Theophany (modified Julian Calendar)
January 7, 2018 Christianity (Orthodox) Feast of the Nativity **
January 13, 2018 Sikhism Maghi
January 14, 2018 Hinduism Makar Sankranti
January 18, 2018 - January 25, 2018 Christianity Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

January 21, 2018

Baha'i

World Religion Day *

January 22, 2018

Hinduism

Vasant Pachami

February
Date Faith Festival
February 2, 2018 Wicca Imbolc * (The Feast of Waxing Light)
February 12, 2018

Christianity (Orthodox)

Great Lent Begins

February 14, 2018

Christianity

Ash Wednesday

February 16, 2018

Buddhism

Chinese/Vietnamese/Korean/New Year

March
Date Faith Festival
March 1, 2018 Judaism Purim *
March 3, 2018 Hinduism Holi **
March 18, 2018 Hinduism

Bikarami Samvat (Hindu New Year)

March 21, 2018 Wicca

Ostara *

March 21, 2018

Baha'i

Naw Ruz (New Year's Day) *

March 21, 2018

Zoroastrianism

Norouz (New Year's Day)

March 25, 2018

Christianity

Palm Sunday

March 26, 2018

Hinduism

Ramanavami

March 28, 2018 Zoroastrianism Khordad Sal (Birth of Prophet Zarathustra)
March 29, 2018 - April 1, 2018

Christianity

Holy Week

March 30, 2018

Christianity

Good Friday
March 31, 2018 - April 7, 2018

Judaism 

Pesach (Passover) *

April
Date Faith Festival
April 1, 2018

Christianity

Easter

April 1, 2018 

Christianity (Orthodox)

Palm Sunday

April 1, 2018 - April 8, 2018

Christianity (Orthodox)

Holy Week

April 6, 2018

Christianity (Orthodox)

Good Friday

April 8, 2018

Christianity (Orthodox)

Easter

April 12, 2018

Judaism

Holocaust Remembrance Day

April 13, 2018 Islam 

Israa & Miraj (Lailat al Miraj) *

April 14, 2018

Sikhism

Baisakhi

April 21, 2018

Baha'i

The Feast of Ridvan *

April 29, 2018

Buddhism

Buddha Day O Visakha Puja ** (Wesak)

May
Date Faith Festival
May 1, 2018 Wicca Beltane *
May 10, 2018

Christianity

Ascension of Christ

May 12, 2018 Islam Mid-Sha'ban (Nisf Sha'ban) *
May 16, 2018

Islam

Ramadan Begins

May 20, 2018

Christianity

Pentecost
May 20, 2018 - May 21, 2018

Judaism

Shavuot *

May 23, 2018 Baha'i The Declaration of the Báb *
May 29, 2018 Baha'i The Ascension of the Bahá'u'lláh *
June
Date Faith Festival
June 11, 2018

Islam

Laylat ul-Qadr (Laylat ul Kadar) *

June 15, 2018 - June 17, 2018 

Islam

Eid ul-Fitr - Ramadan Ends

June 16, 2018 Sikhism Martyrdom of Guru Arjan Dev Ji
June 20, 2018

Islam

Day of Hajj *

June 21, 2018 Wicca Litha *
June 21, 2018 Aboriginal Spirituality Aboriginal Day (Canada)
July
Date Faith Festival
July 9, 2018 Baha'i The Martyrdom of the Báb *
July 22, 2018 Judaism Tish'a B'Av
August
Date Faith Festival
August 2, 2018 Wicca Lammas (English/Scottish custom)
August 6, 2018 Christianity (Orthodox) Transfiguration Day (modified Julian Calendar)
August 22, 2018 - August 25, 2018

Islam

Eid ul-Adha * (The Festival of Sacrifice)

August 29, 2018

Hinduism

Raksha Bandhan **

September
Date Faith Festival
September 3, 2018

Hinduism

Sri Krishna Jayanti (Krishna Janmashtami)

September 10, 2018 - September 11, 2018

Judaism

Rosh Hashanah*

September 12, 2018 Islam Al-HijraMuhrram * (Islamic New Year's Day)
September 13, 2018

Hinduism

Ganesa Chaturthi

September 19, 2018

Judaism

Yom Kippur*

September 21, 2018

Islam

Ashura *

September 22, 2018 Wicca Mabon *
September 24, 2018 - September 31, 2018

Judaism

Sukkot*

October
Date Faith Festival
October 1, 2018

Judaism

Shemini Atzeret *

October 2, 2018 Judaism Simhat Torah * (Rejoicing of the Law)
October 19, 2018 Hinduism Dasera (Dassehra) **

October 20, 2018

Baha'i

The Birth of the Báb *

October 20, 2018

Sikhism

Installation of Scriptures as Guru Granth

November
Date Faith Festival
November 1, 2018

Wicca

Samhain *

November 1, 2018 Christianity All Saints' Day
November 7, 2018

Hinduism/Sikhism

Diwali

November 12, 2018 Baha'i The Birth of the Bahá'ulláh
November 21, 2018

Islam

Mawlid an-Nabi

November 23, 2018

Sikhism

Birthday of Guru Nanak Dev Sahib

November 23, 2018 Sikhism Guru Tegh Bahadur Martydrom
November 26, 2018 Baha'i Day of Covenant *
December
Date Faith Festival
December 2, 2018 Christianity First Day of Advent
December 3, 2018 - December 10, 2018 Judaism Hanukkah *
December 21, 2018 Wicca Yule *
December 25, 2018 Christianity Christmas *
Judaism