Midnight Mass and clothing


Ok, this is my first year as a Catholic and it is going to be my first year going to Midnight Mass. What do people wear? Is it more casual because it is midnight or do I need to break out my dress and heels like I would on a Sunday/ Holy Day of Obligation?

This is NOT a modesty thread. I just need to know what is appropriate for *this particular Mass. * Thanks! :slight_smile:


In most of the US, people dress warmly for Midnight Mass, meaning that they are heavily bundled up. Fashion is the last thing on their minds. Of course, I am a man. What do I know?


lol. I’m in Florida and this past Sunday I wore a knee length, short sleeved dress. I doubt I need to bundle up. lol. Maybe I should have said where I live. :blush:


Dress like you would for a holy day of obligation I guess, since it is. There is no Mass that is more ‘casual’ than any other though.


It is ten below zero in Iowa right now.


Oh, that is awful!


It has been my experience that Midnight Mass was dress up. This was up north so like someone mentioned usually coats were also worn this time of year. So you ended up in a packed Church holding or sitting on your coat. :slight_smile:


It’ll probably be 20 degrees Fahrenheit when I leave for Midnight Mass. I usually wear a dress (I’m in the choir) to Midnight Mass and this year should be no exception, despite the ice storm we just had. I have a bright red woolen dress that has worked for me and that’s what I plan on this year, too. I’ve lost so much weight in the past year that this may be the last year I can wear that particular dress.

I’ll be the cantor for our 6:00 pm mass - I’ll wear slacks and a festive top because I’m too visible and too busy to have time to worry about the fall of my dress.

I’ll be the cantor with a choir at the 9:00 am mass - I’m still undecided as to what I will wear to that mass.


Whoa, that is cold !


Well, that’s relative, I suppose. I like cold, so -10 wouldn’t bother me :slight_smile:

As for your question: I think you’ll find this varies from place to place, even from parish to parish. In my last US parish (South Carolina), women wore dresses and heels. Some even wore fancy hats! Men wore their best suits, with ties. Midnight Mass was definitely an occasion for “dressier than your average Sunday.”

Where I live now, people tend to wear what they would ordinarily wear to Sunday Mass. The older women wear dresses or skirts and nice dress shoes; men wear suits and ties. Young adults wear sweaters and casual trousers or even jeans. Parents of young children wear whatever they’re comfortable chasing their brood around the church in :smiley: I am younger than the older set, but I wear a dress and heels because this level of attire is similar to what I grew up wearing to midnight Mass. I’m also serving the Mass and thus feel uncomfortable with the idea of wearing just any ol’ thing, so despite the ongoing storm—high winds and heavy rain—I will again be in a dress and heels tonight.

A blessed Christmas to you and everyone on CAF!


In my experience I’d say very few people dress casually at a midnight mass (other than sleeping kids in PJs :D). I tend to see a ton more suits and nice dresses then at a regular Sunday mass.


I would tend to agree with the general gist of the posts here - Christmas tends not to be as casual, and dressing up for the occasion is probably the better approach–after all it is the birth of our Lord–part of the way we show honor and respect to someone is the way we dress, and who deserves more honor and respect than Jesus?


Dress presentably appropriate for the climate of your area. God bless. Enjoy Midnight Mass. I’ll be praying for you.


-25 F in northern minnesota right now…and our heating system is on the fritz at my parish…knee length down coat,scarf and mukluks for this girl tonight!!


I try to avoid wearing my limited number of suits unless I have to (dry cleaning bills and such) and I shall be wearing a suit tonight.


Congratulations on joining the Church.

For Christmas Masses, many people often love wearing “their best”, this includes Midnight Mass as well.

Often the Midnight Mass has the choir singing more than usual. Sometimes it means violins, trumpets, tympani.

Its often a Mass with incense.

Not that any of that makes one Mass “better” than another Mass, but there is a more formal feel to the Mass.

Some people will wear their beautiful coat that makes them feel extra pretty because it is Christmas - even if the temperature where they live is not cold.

I notice more suits on men and boys for Christmas. Women often wear their “pretty” or “special” dress and heals.

Wear what you feel comfortable wearing. If you want to dress up, do so. If you want to wear something simple since its so late at night - do so.

Merry Christmas! :christmastree1:


Dress in what you’re comfortable wearing. How dressy it is depends on parish tradition. I wouldn’t wear jeans but I also wouldn’t dress to the nines either. Workplace casual is fine.


My husband and I will be dressing up like we usually do for Mass - my husband probably a bit “more” than usual by wearing a tie. The kids will be in warm PJs. :wink:


No kidding and very icy. No high heels here In my city in Iowa tonight I bet. (Waving to Paul from Iowa from my Igloo with my parka on LOL :))

Mary (from Iowa)


It is a quite comfortable 57 degrees where I am right now. Barely even light sweater weather. :slight_smile:

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