“I am aware that it will be very disappointing not to gather in church this year for Christmas and New Year’s Day celebrations, but I consider it our duty to participate in the collective effort to prevent the further spread of the coronavirus,” said Cardinal Gérald C. Lacroix, Archbishop of Quebec City, in a statement released December 22.
In view of the worsening health situation, the Archbishop, in consultation with his team and parish leaders, has decided to suspend all celebrations from December 23, 2021 until January 10, 2022, with the exception of funerals.
Christmas Masses are obviously affected by this new decision. This is a blow for Catholics who are preparing to celebrate Christmas on December 25.
Online resources to celebrate Christmas
A detailed letter sent on December 22 to parish leaders explains this difficult decision, which is taken in a spirit of solidarity with the most vulnerable. While Masses are suspended, personal visits to churches will remain possible if the required public health checks are implemented. Funerals will also be permitted in accordance with the measures enacted by the Government of Quebec.
Despite these circumstances, the Archbishop encourages Christians to “take time for interiority, exchange and celebration at home.”
Some online resources (readings, prayers, family liturgy…) are available to the faithful to celebrate the coming of Christ in their homes. Christmas Masses will also be broadcast on television or on the Internet.