Then too, there are the church holidays that catch us off guard. On any number of occasions, we have totally missed that an important Saints Day was about to occur - which means schools and stores will be closed. Unless you know about these things, you are likely to have nothing in the kitchen to cook and must go to a restaurant for your meal, unless it is the "Ruhetag" (rest day) or "Freizeit" (vacation week) for the restaurant.
It is not a bad thing to live on church time - just a surprise for someone used to a secular calendar. There is no pretense of separation of church and state -- rather a cluck-clucking distain for the efforts to secularize the society (Josef II in 1780s; Napoleon in 1803/1804; Hitler in 1930/40s). Nor is there an expectation for people to live a life of "hyper-spirituality" or exhibit "holier than thou" behaviors. No one is competing for my soul on behalf of a religion - not even the priest.
So - we have made every effort to download an annual Saints Day calendar, attended church so that we can pick up the weekly pamphlet that announces the scheduled "masses for the dead," and joined our landlords for celebrations that everyone else knew were happening but we had no idea.
And somehow, it is all okay.
Sanctuary of the church at the Cloister Seeon.