In 1960 the May 3 feast of the Invention of the Holy Cross was removed from the liturgical calendar of the Catholic Church in order to reduce the number of major feasts and to focus devotion to the Holy Cross on September 14, the day commemorating its Exaltation. For many Mexicans, this change was more distressing than papal authorities had anticipated. People from various walks of life and places were not inclined to give up this favorite feast day, which they felt was a lifeline to well-being here and now and the promise of salvation hereafter. For them it was an essential practice, not a vestigial one Workers in the building trades were conspicuous dissenters. Virtually every construction site in Mexico must have its protective cross, to be decorated and honored on May 3. And communities all over Mexico, especially in rural towns and villages, celebrated the day by decorating their special crosses in public and private places, attending mass, praying for rain and an abundant harvest, and celebrating with food, drink, fireworks, music, and dancing. For many, it was the only Day of the Holy Cross they had known. To steer clear of a prolonged dispute over popular traditions of faith, Mexican bishops successfully appealed to Rome for May 3 to remain a major feast there.