The Archdiocese of Chicago to Celebrate Simbang Gabi from Friday, December 15 through Saturday

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Cardinal Blase J. Cupich will preside at the traditional Filipino Mass on Wednesday, December 20 at St. Hilary Church in Chicago at 5 p.m.

Chicago, IL (December 14, 2017) – The Archdiocese of Chicago will celebrate Simbang Gabi from Friday, December 15 through Saturday, December 23, 2017. Sponsored by the Archdiocese’s Asian Catholic Initiative Office, Simbang Gabi is one of the oldest and most popular Filipino Christmas traditions. Cardinal Blase J. Cupich, Archbishop of Chicago, will preside over a Simbang Gabi Mass on Wednesday, December 20 at 5 p.m. at St. Hilary Church, 5600 North Fairfield Avenue, Chicago.

Simbang Gabi is a beautiful Filipino tradition epitomizing the Advent season, a time of preparation, hope and anticipation,” said Cardinal Cupich. “Simbang Gabi’s deep roots of faith, piety and devotion help prepare us for the arrival of Jesus Christ and remind us what Christmas is about - peace, love and generosity.” 

Simbang Gabi is a nine-day novena to the Blessed Mother traditionally celebrated in a series of dawn Masses by Filipino Catholics around the world. The Masses include liturgies, music and native delicacies. The tradition is traced back more than 500 years to the arrival of Spanish missionaries in the Philippines. At the time, they had a tradition of celebrating pre-Christmas Masses before daybreak which became known by the popular Spanish name “Misa de Gallo” or "Rooster Mass.'' Simbang Gabi culminates with the Misa de Gallo on Christmas Eve to welcome the birth of Jesus Christ.  

In Chicago, Filipino Catholics have organized evening novena Masses since 1986. This year’s theme of “A Year of the Lord’s Favor” will be celebrated by more than 70 archdiocesan churches.

For more information about Simbang Gabi and for a full schedule of Masses, please visit aciarchchicago.org.

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