This is a strange year for the Liturgical Calendar. Christmas falls on a Monday, so Christmas Eve is on Sunday. That means that Sunday morning, December 24, we celebrate the Fourth Sunday of Advent with our usual Masses at 8:30 and 10:30. That same day, we celebrate Christmas Vigil Masses at 4:00 and 6:30 p.m. and Midnight Mass at 11:00 p.m. It will be a full day! On Monday, the Mass of Christmas Day will be celebrated at 9:00 a.m. I know it will be tempting to skip the morning Mass on December 24, but I encourage you to celebrate the Liturgical Year in all its fullness. The readings and liturgical prayers for the Fourth Sunday of Advent are important to set up the full joy of Christmas. We should see this day not as a burden, but as an opportunity to spend a really holy day with the Lord, whose Paschal Mystery begins with the Incarnation. The long-expected Messiah finally came into the world to announce the Good News that God was intending to redeem the world.
~ Fr. Frank Coady