Pope Francis will have, as he does every year, various liturgical celebrations this Christmas that the faithful will be able to follow. This was announced by the Sala Stampa, which has published the calendar with the most important dates between December 24, 2023 and January 7, 2024.
The first event included in the program is the Mass Solemn Eucharist on December 24. The Pope will celebrate the Eucharist in St. Peter's Basilica at 7:30 p.m. (Rome time). In the evening, he will participate in a Mass in the papal chapel. The following day, Francis will impart the traditional "Urbi et Orbi" blessing of December 25 at noon. He will also take the opportunity to deliver his Christmas message.
Just one week later, on December 31 at 5:00 p.m. in the Basilica, the Holy Father will recite First Vespers and the "Te Deum" in thanksgiving for the past year. The following day, January 1, 2024, there will be a Mass at 10:00 a.m. to celebrate the Solemnity of Mary Most Holy, Mother of God and the World Day of Peace.
On January 6 at 10 a.m. Francis will celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany of the Lord with a Mass at St. Peter's. A day later, he will celebrate Mass for the Baptism of the Lord and baptize several children in the Sistine Chapel.
Christmas 2023 at the Vatican
Pope Francis' Christmas celebrations will end with the Eucharist on January 7. On the same day, the Nativity Scene and the tree will be removed from the Vatican. The latter will be lit on December 9 at 5 p.m., an event that joins the other December celebrations that the Pope will preside over, beyond those mentioned above. On December 8 at 4 p.m., Francis will venerate the Immaculate Conception in Piazza di Spagna in Rome. Four days later he will preside the Mass commemorating the Virgin of Guadalupe.
Despite the lung infection the Holy Father suffered at the end of November that prevented him from taking part in some of his weekly appointments, the Sala Stampa is counting on his full recovery ahead of the trip to Dubai in early December and the major events at the end of the month.