Does the Easter Vigil Mass fulfill Easter Sunday obligation?

Does the Easter Vigil Mass fulfill the Easter Sunday obligation?

Yes it does but Easter Sunday is too wonderful to miss!


Great! Thank you. I agree with you, unfortunately my family’s dynamics might prevent me from going on Easter Sunday. :frowning:

I go to the Easter Vigil because Easter Day is usually overcrowded with those who go to Mass two times a year (Easter and Christmas).

Yes, it does, as you’ve already been told. Easter Vigil is the best point of the year, in my opnion. If you belonged to my parish, you would want to go early to make sure you have a seat. It is a “hot item”.

The Sunday Masses are nice, too. The later one gets attended by the CAE people, so it is crowded as well.

Yes, we have a name for people that go to church on Christmas and Easter and skip church the rest of the time. They’re “ChrEasters”!

And yes, the church may be bulging (in fact it overflows into another building) but the Brass Ensemble at 10:30 mass on Easter Sunday makes it all worthwhile for me!


Yes, it is the premier liturgy of Easter. The masses during the day on Sunday or for those who for whatever reason could not be at the vigil.

I go to the Easter Vigil because it is the most beautiful Mass of the year. I love the 7 readings along with the praises.

When I played in the Folk Group, I would attend the Easter Vigil and then I played at the Easter Mass on Sunday morning. As one poster pointed out, Easter Mass was standing room only, and many people who attended are never seen the rest of the year.
In fact the crowding is so bad, people are literally standing outside the Church on the sidewalk, which can only hold about 200 people. Having an extra Mass was no good. The last Mass of the morning, 11AM still drew the majority of the people.


I find it sad that people can only go twice a year. Perhaps that would be a good time for the priest to explain what a mortal sin is and that deliberately skipping mass on Sunday is a Mortal sin…and well…I guess he could say somthing to the effect…Like…“well I heard its a dry heat…”:o

Father’s opening lines to his homily yesterday (Easter Sunday) was:

“We all know the Easter story. The Easter story is the reason we are here today.
However is it enough to say I believe in Christ?”

He would then go on and say some things and every so often would add:
“Is it enough to say I believe in Christ?”

It was a good homily I walked way with some questions about my own faith… and I’m one of the ones that you will find in the pew Sunday after Sunday.

If I was left wondering about my own faith, I can only imagine how the Easter-Christmas goers felt.

Puzzleannie, might you have a reference for this statement? I am especially interested, because on another thread we were wondering if the Easter Vigil has long counted for meeting the obligation, or if its counting is recent, just like with the regular Sunday vigils.

the Easter Vigil is not “like regular Sunday vigils” it is the premier celebration of Easter in both meanings, the first and the most important. in most EAstern churches it is the only celebration of Easter. in the west Masses during the day are offered for the convenience of those unable to attend that longer service.

Masses on Saturday evening are actually anticipated for Sunday, not properly called vigils.

for reference I have nothing available to me here as I am out of town but look at the liturgical texts for Easter both Mass and LOTH, and at the RCIA ritual book.

Easter begins with a nocturnal vigil, like all ancient feasts, and the Mass proper didn’t start until after midnight. The feast doesn’t end until Vespers on Sunday.

This is a silly argument. The Vigil is indeed the premiere feast, but the Mass “of the Day” is very ancient in its own right.

I’m very interested in Catholic details. Can anyone point me to a written text that specifically states that the attending Easter Vigil fulfulls the Easter Sunday obligation? Thanks. :slight_smile:

I can’t give you that. HOWEVER, I can tell you that the Easter Vigil is a vigil of Easter, and just like the Saturday Vigil in anticipation of a Sunday (which Easter is), the Vigil works in the same manner.

It appears I can. Canon 1248.

Here is the documentation from the Code of Canon Law:

Can. 1247 On Sundays and other holy days of obligation, the faithful are obliged to participate in the Mass.

Moreover, they are to abstain from those works and aVairs which hinder the worship to be rendered to God, the joy proper to the Lord’s day, or the suitable relaxation of mind and body.

Can. 1248 §1. A person who assists at a Mass celebrated anywhere in a Catholic rite either on the feast day itself or in the evening of the preceding day satisfies the obligation of participating in the Mass.

Mine as well; my husband and I have a delicate agreement that I’ll go to the Sikh kirtan (worship service) on Sundays and I go to Mass Saturday evenings. I’d love to do an Easter sunrise service again, but I want to show respect for my husband too.

Blessed be,

Yes the key word here is to understand what the word vigil means

Isn’t Vigil one of the guys in the Andy Griffith Show?:confused: :wink: Or was he an ancient poet?

The Easter Vigil is the “mother” of all Vigils. This is what Paschale Solemnitatis says on the matter:

A. The Easter Vigil

  1. According to a most ancient tradition, this night is “one of vigil for the Lord,” [79] and the Vigil celebrated during it, to commemorate that holy night when the Lord rose from the dead, is regarded as the “mother of all holy vigils.”[80] For in that night, the Church keeps vigil, waiting for the resurrection of the Lord, and celebrates the sacraments of Christian initiation. [81]
  1. The Meaning of the Nocturnal Character of the Easter Vigil
  1. “The entire celebration of the Easter Vigil takes place at night. It should not begin before nightfall; it should end before daybreak on Sunday.” [82] This rule is to be taken according to its strictest sense. Reprehensible are those abuses and practices that have crept into many places in violation of this ruling, whereby the Easter Vigil is celebrated at the time of day that it is customary to celebrate anticipated Sunday Masses. [83]

Those reasons that have been advanced in some quarters for the anticipation of the Easter Vigil, such as lack of public order, are not put forward in connection with Christmas night nor other gatherings of various kinds.

  1. The Passover Vigil, in which the Hebrews kept watch for the Lord’s passover which was to free them from slavery to Pharaoh, is an annual commemoration. It prefigured the true Pasch of Christ that was to come, the night that is of true liberation, in which “destroying the bonds of death, Christ rose as victor from the depths.” [84]
  1. ***From the very outset, the Church has celebrated that annual Pasch, which is the solemnity of solemnities, above all by means of a night vigil. For the resurrection of Christ is the foundation of our faith and hope, and through baptism and confirmation, we are inserted into the paschal mystery of Christ, dying, buried, and raised with him, and with him, we shall also reign. [85]

The full meaning of Vigil is a waiting for the coming of the Lord. [86]***

It is perhaps the culmination ouf the Paschal Triduum. Now, this is not to say that Easter Sunday is not important; however, it is on the night of the Easter Vigil that we hear the Gospel account of the Resurrection story.

It is one of the most, if not, the most, beautiful liturgy of the year. It also completes the Paschal Triduum. As I understand it, the whole three Days are to be taken as one complete liturgy that begins on Holy Thursday, the Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper, and ends with the Easter Vigil. That is why you don’t have a concluding rite on Holy Thursday and you proceed in unbroken silence to Good Friday. Good Friday has no concluding rite and you go forth to the Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday.