The Holy Family consists of the Child Jesus, the Virgin Mary, and Saint Joseph. Veneration of the Holy Family was formally begun in the 17th century by Blessed François de Laval, the first bishop of New France, who founded a Confraternity.
The Feast of the Holy Family is a liturgical celebration in the Church in honor of Jesus , the Blessed Virgin Mary, and his father, Saint Joseph, as a family. The Feast is celebrated on the Sunday following Christmas, unless that Sunday is January 1st, in which case it is celebrated on December 30th.
The feast of the Holy Family was instituted by Pope Leo XIII in 1893 on the Sunday within the Octave of the Epiphany; that is to say, on the Sunday between January 7 through January 13, all inclusive (see General Roman Calendar of 1962). The calendar of the 1962 Roman Missal, whose use is still authorized, keeps the celebration on that date. It was never a holy day of obligation, unless its celebration fell on a Sunday, when therefore there is an obligation to attend Mass on that day.