Pope's Year-end Calendar Is Full

Plans to Preside at Key Liturgical Celebrations

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VATICAN CITY, SEPT. 20, 2004 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II plans to preside at the Christmas liturgical celebrations as well as the other key liturgies until year-end, the Holy See reported.

The «Calendar of Liturgical Celebrations of the Holy Father» until December, published today by the Vatican press office, includes the long Christmas vigil Mass on Dec. 24.

The Vatican announcement confirms that the Pope will follow the agenda of previous years.

On Tuesday, Sept. 28, John Paul II plans to preside over a 6 p.m. Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica for the eternal rest of his predecessors Paul VI and John Paul I.

On Sunday, Oct. 3, at 10 a.m. in St. Peter’s Square, the Holy Father will beatify Pierre Vigne, Joseph Marie Cassant, Anna Katharina Emmerick, Maria Ludovica De Angelis, and Charles I of Habsburg, last emperor of Austria and king of Hungary.

On Sunday, Oct. 17, at 5:30 p.m. the Pope will open the Year of the Eucharist during a Mass in St. Peter’s. It will be accompanied by Eucharistic adoration and Benediction. The ceremony will take place on the occasion of the closing of the International Eucharistic Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico.

On Friday, Oct. 22, the Pope will preside at a Mass in St. Peter’s for the opening of the academic year of Rome’s ecclesiastical universities.

On Wednesday, Dec. 8, John Paul II plans to go, as he does every year, to Piazza di Spagna, in Rome, to render homage to the Blessed Virgin on the 150th anniversary of the dogmatic definition of her Immaculate Conception.

On Tuesday, Dec. 14, at 5:30 p.m. the Pontiff will celebrate a Mass in St. Peter’s for university students of the city of Rome.

Mass on Dec. 24 will begin at midnight in St. Peter’s Basilica and will be presided over by the Pope.

At midday on Christmas Day, John Paul II will deliver his message and impart the blessing «urbi et orbi» (to the city of Rome and the world) from St. Peter’s Square.

On Friday, Dec. 31, at 6 p.m., the Pope will preside at vespers and at the praying of the «Te Deum» in thanksgiving for the year ending.

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