24 December – Vigil of the Nativity of the Lord/Mass at Midnight
Midnight Mass is the first liturgy of Christmastide that is celebrated on the night of Christmas Eve, traditionally beginning at midnight when Christmas Eve gives way to Christmas Day. This popular Christmas custom is a jubilant celebration of the Mass in honour of the Nativity of Jesus Christ.
Saint Thomas Aquinas wrote a commentary on these words and explained in his Summa Theologiae, “And from this ,the Mass derives its name … the deacon on festival days ‘dismisses’ the people at the end of the Mass, by saying: ‘Ite, missa est,’ that is, the victim [Jesus] has been sent to God through the angel, so that it may be accepted by God.”
Christmas Novena to the Christ Child – Day Nine:
All the Holy Ancestors of Christ – A commemoration of all the holy ancestors of Jesus Christ.
By Blessed Jacopone da Todi OFM (1230-1306)
The beautiful Mother is bending
Low where her Baby lies
Helpless and frail, for her tending
But she knows the glorious eyes.
The Mother smiles and rejoices,
While the Baby laughs in the hay,
She listens to heavenly voices:
“This Child shall be King some day.”
O dear little Child in the manger,
Let me make merry with Thee,
O King, in my hour of danger,
Wilt Thou be strong for me?
St Adam the Patriarch
St Adela of Pfalzel
Bl Alberic of Gladbach
Bl Brocard of Strasbourg
St Bruno of Ottobeuren
St Caran of Scotland
St Delphinus of Bordeaux
St Emiliana and St Trasilla (died sixth Century) Virgins of the Church and aunts of Saint Pope Gregory the Great (540-604). What we know of their lives was recorded by the holy Pope, who was deeply moved by their model of Christian life and virtue.
St Euthymius of Nicomedia
St Eve the Matriarch
Bl Francesco dei Maleficii
St Gregory of Spoleto
St Hanno of Worms OSB (Died 978) Benedictine Monk, Bishop of Worms from 950 until his death.
Bl Ignacio Caselles García
St Irmina of Oehren (Died c 716) Virgin Princess, Nun
St Mochua of Timahoe
Bl Pablo Meléndez Gonzalo
St Paola Elisabetta Cerioli (1816-1865) Widow, Founder of the Institute of the Sisters of the Holy Family, the male branch – the Religious of the Holy Family, of which orders she is the Patron.
Bl Peter de Solanes
Bl Venerandus of Clermont
• Blessed Dionysius Roneo
• Blessed Philip Claro
• Blessed Giulio Pons
• Blessed Peter of Valladolid
Blessed Mercedarian Sisters – (6 beati): Six cloistered Mercedarian nuns at the convent of Vera Cruz in Berriz, Spain. Noted for their devotion to the rules of the Order and for their deep prayer lives.
• Blessed Anna Maria Prieto
• Blessed Anna de Arrano
• Blessed Orsola de Larisgoizia
• Blessed Maguna Mary
• Blessed Margaret
• Blessed Mary of the Assumption Sarria
Martyred Maidens of Antioch – (40 saints): A group of forty virgins martyred in the persecutions of Decius. None of their names have come down to us. They were martyred in 250 in Antioch, Syria.
Martyrs of Tripoli – (6 saints): A group of Christians martyred together, date unknown. The only details that have survived are six of the names – Drusus, Lucian, Metrobius, Paul, Theotimus and Zenobius. They were martyred in Tripoli, Libya.