Dutch Catholic bishops cancel Christmas Midnight Masses due to COVID-19 pandemic

Catholic bishops in the Netherlands have decided to cancel Christmas Midnight Masses once again this year as a precaution to stop the spread of COVID-19.

The Dutch bishops announced on Dec 1 that no Catholic Masses or other parish functions will be allowed to take place after 5 pm, with public venues required to close between 5 pm and 5 am under new government measures lasting until at least Dec 19.

The Dutch bishops’ conference website explained that the decision, also taken last year, was made to prevent large crowds gathering for evening Masses on Christmas Eve. It added that it is difficult to maintain good ventilation with multiple Masses in one evening.

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