Today In Fact, 14 January

There was a time in France and other parts of Western Europe when today was celebrated as the Feast of the ass. Donkeys were paraded through the villages and towns carrying a young virgin and child. The donkeys would then be tethered at the altar while Mass was said and the congregations would answer “hee-haw” to all the parts of the Mass.

It has been lost as a religious ritual now for almost a millennium but it is heartening to understand that our ancestors enjoyed a good laugh while engaging in the serious business of worship.

– Posted by Douglas Racionzer (