The short answer is no.

Apart from every Sunday of the year, Christmas Day is one of just two Holy Days of Obligation in Australia. The other one is the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (15 August). These two holy days are to be observed each year, regardless of the day of the week on which they fall.

When Christmas Day falls on the Saturday, there are two separate obligations for Catholics to celebrate Mass, one is for Christmas Day and the other is for the Sunday. Where Mass was celebrated on the Saturday evening, it should be the Mass for Christmas Day rather than a Sunday vigil Mass. In the coming years, this will be relevant again in 2021, 2027, 2032, 2038, 2049, 2055, 2060 and 2066 when Christmas Day will again fall on a Saturday.

When Christmas Day is on Sunday, it takes priority over an "ordinary" Sunday Liturgy. In these years, where Mass is celebrated on the Saturday evening, it should be the vigil Mass for Christmas Day. In the coming years, this will be relevant again in 2022, 2033, 2039, 2044, 2050, 2061 and 2067 when Christmas Day will again fall on a Sunday.

The same principle applies to the Feast of the Assumption.

The Feast of the Assumption next falls on a Saturday in 2020.

The Feast of the Assumption next falls on a Sunday in 2021.

Acknowledgements
Photo by F Wilkinson

Reviewed
14 October 2019

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