A Little Early (heh) For This Topic Perhaps -- Pittsburgh To Allow Extra-Early Vigil Masses This Christmas

I’m just sayin’


Bumping this up for readers.

Years ago when I first passed through Las Vegas, there were so many Masses at the cathedral (on the strip), on the hour in the church and on the half hour in the hall, that there was a 2:30 Mass on saturday afternoon that met the obligation “for tourists only.” [now that I think of it, i assume it also did for the parishioners that were needed to put it on . . .]

Back when you still looked in the yellow pages to find the local church . . .

That parish, later co-cathedral, now cathedral was built by the casinos. They offered to build it, there near the northern end of the strip (just south of the Riviera [now also lost to history]) if the bishop would have a 3:45 AM (or some such) Mass for workers coming off shift . . .

Today, it’s not overwhelmed, as the shrine has been built at the southern end. (which, itself, created the odd situation of, after it was built for casino/resort tourists, being cited as a reason that a new casino couldn’t be built as it was too close to a church! :scream: The bishop had to very aggressively waive the restriction. I don’t think he publicly said, "Why do you think we built it, you morons!", but that was the jist of it.

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Like the Printer’s Masses of yore


but the newspapers didn’t pay for the church to hold it in . . .

In possibly the most useless musing I’ve ever made on CAF…

Would this have met the obligation for locals who decided to go stay at a casino hotel for a couple of days, and enjoy entertainment on the Strip, “just because”, i.e., taking a vacation in basically the same city you live in?

Sometimes you just need a little time away from home to immerse yourself in new surroundings, even if it’s close by. Earlier in the year, when I was clutching at straws to find a way to take my son on some sort of summer vacation (due to COVID and my father’s worsening health, it didn’t happen), we looked at hotels 15-20 miles away with a pool and outdoor corridors (safer for social distancing), close enough for us to return to my parents quickly if needed. One of the towns is basically run by the Freemasons (and that is putting it mildly), I shared this with my son, we drove by their headquarters and I pointed it out to him, and I do believe he got “spooked” in that he views Freemasonry as some kind of sinister cult (he’s exaggerated it in his mind, I told him so). He didn’t want to stay in that town!

:rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

A truly intriguing question.

My wife and i tend to escape into the crowds for three nights three or four times a year. (typically Sunday to Wednesday, for the best rates [a perk of self-employment]), so it doesn’t usually come up (but when we’re there on Sunday morning we tend to go to St. Joan of Arc, a tiny parish near downtown).

I guess it spins around the definition of “tourist” . . . my eastern answer would be that when someone is actively seaking out the sacraments on vacation . . .

If I am ever appointed as Bishop of Las Vegas, assuming this rule still applies, one of the first things I’m going to do, is to say “this Mass is for everyone, not just tourists, if you want to get Sunday Mass out of the way early, go ahead and be at peace about it, Vegas is a crazy enough place as it is”.

(I am assuming that Las Vegans actually do call it “Vegas” — I hope it’s not like the shibboleth that native San Franciscans never, ever, call it “Frisco”… I fear I have disturbed the ghost of Herb Caen… by even bringing it up…).

It doesn’t seem early to me. We start planning for Christmas by Thanksgiving, and this brings ups some intriguing questions, like the Christmas Mass bump will not work under the COVID restrictions. Do we need an extra?

Many prayers for our clergy and liturgical teams that already have a huge workload during the Christmas season. My parish has already scheduled a 4:00, 6:00, 9:00, and Midnight for Christmas Eve and a few Christmas Day Masses. I’m not sure if this notice from Bishop Zubik will have them consider some earlier Masses for Christmas Eve, too.

It’s going to be busy.


I wish I could just go to mass at anytime on Christmas. I would go at 2:30 in the afternoon or at 3 in the morning if I could go without risking my kids or husband getting ill.


I saw this when it came out. Notice, though, that this isn’t just “hey! go to Mass early to meet your obligation!” (since there isn’t an obligation this year) or even “hey! go to Mass early, rather than going at 4pm!”.

Instead, the idea here is to give parishes the opportunity to schedule additional Masses. Not replace later Mass times, but to add more. This, then, is a way to address the fact that church seating capacity is is down, and attempt to increase the numbers of people at Christmas Eve Mass.

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That Mass doesn’t even exist any more . . . nor do the half-hour Masses in the hall. We now have the Shrine of the Holy Redeemer just off the southern strip. Many locals do attend there regualrly.

we do–more often than “Las Vegas” in certain contexts. It’s even in street names, school names, etc: Vegas Valley Drive, and so forth.

[note: it’s actuall an “anduvial plain” or some such, not a valley", fwiw]

Hahaha, not early. As a music director, I started asking my pastor questions about Christmas in August. He was surprised, but only for the second it took him to think. “Oh, I guess you do have to start thinking about that now.” Our Bishop, on the other hand, gave us our Christmas rules just two weeks ago. Now I’m scrambling to put together something beautiful for Jesus’ birthday (per my pastor) while trying to honor self-contradictory rules (per the Bishop).

Have you ever tried to pull together a harp choir from the idea up when you have only ten weeks, five small harps, and the hope that you can attract enough non-musician volunteers who’ve never seen a harp before? No one will read music, so I’m pretty sure I’m going to have to invent a harp tabulature. God be with me. I love you, Jesus.

This Bishop’s permission was thoughtful, but some of us work really hard for these feasts even during normalcy, and this situation has been fairly static for a while now. In these extreme circumstances, it would have been considerate to give more notice.

…One of the first things I am going to do is consign my bride to a cloister. :joy:

Then I’ll straighten out the whole Saturday “evening” Mass thing…

I’ll just leave this – my usual fly in the ointment when the When-Is-Evening question comes up – here:

To my knowledge the rubrics for the vigil of Christmas are explicit that it may be celebrated before or after Evening Prayer I of Christmas.

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