Vatican City, Dec 10, 2020 / 10:00 am
Pope Francis' Midnight Mass will begin at 7:30 p.m. this year, as the Italian government extends a national curfew through the Christmas season.
The pope's traditional celebration of Christmas "Mass during the Night," which takes place at St. Peter's Basilica on Dec. 24, has in recent years begun at 9:30 p.m.
For 2020, the start time of the Mass has been moved two hours earlier to accommodate one of Italy's coronavirus measures: a curfew which requires people to be at home between the hours of 10 p.m. and 5 a.m., unless going to or from work.
Another novelty in 2020 is that Pope Francis will give the Christmas Day "Urbi et Orbi" blessing from St. Peter's Basilica and not from the loggia on the church's facade, which overlooks the square.