New York CITY


St. Patrick’s Cathedral, America’s Parish Church, is open and vibrant this Christmas Season

—St. Patrick’s Cathedral has illuminated its exterior for the first time in 164 years and therefore contributing to the ornamentation of the city during the Christmas season—   

—Father Enrique Salvo, St. Patrick’s first Hispanic rector, reported that in the end of his first year at the helm of the religious center, the parish has welcome more than 1.5 million visitors during the month of December—

Download Press Release: English / Spanish

New York City, December 19, 2022 – Celebrating his first anniversary as the first Hispanic Rector of St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Nicaraguan priest Father Enrique Salvo reported that New York City’s main religious center has welcomed more than 1.5 million visitors during the month of December. Father Salvo noted that this figure corresponds to the number of visitors during the pre-pandemic season and attributed the increase in the number of visitors to some of the Christmas initiatives, including the special illumination of the exterior of the Cathedral, a project that is being carried out for the first time in 164 years of St. Patrick’s history.

“2022 has been the year of New York City’s resurgence of tourism, and St. Patrick’s Cathedral, as a landmark and iconic site, wishes to do its part for the city by being ready with open doors to welcome believers, non-believers and people of all creeds to visit and discover this marvel of neo-Gothic architecture that stands majestically on New York’s Fifth Avenue,” the priest said. 

Father Enrique Salvo, Rector of St. Patrick’s Cathedral

St. Patrick’s Cathedral is the largest neo-Gothic church, not only in New York City, but in all  North America, and it is recognized as an architectural landmark worldwide. This year, for the first time since its founding in 1858, the Cathedral has illuminated its exterior by installing  Christmas lights, seeking to attract tourists, locals and people of all cultures and religions.

“It is important to highlight that the illumination installed at this moment is something temporary that gives a flavour, an idea to people of what it would be permanently,” assured Father Enrique Salvo. “It is expected to be something permanent, as  with the  great churches in Europe, where every single detail is illuminated,” he pointed out.

Father Enrique Salvo, Rector of St. Patrick’s Cathedral

A few days before Christmas, Father Salvo invites the Hispanic community, locals and visitors in general to attend the upcoming events scheduled by the Cathedral for celebrating the season:

“On December 24th a Mass in English for children will be celebrated at 5:30 pm, and on the 25th we will have a full schedule of Masses, including a Mass in Spanish, at 4:00 pm, for all those families who wish to join us.” The He  added: “St. Patrick’s is a special space for all those immigrants and tourists to visit not only for praying, but also to enjoy the decorations and lights that, for the first time, are on to beautify our facade in the best style of European cathedrals,” the priest concluded.

Every year, on December 24th, the emblematic St. Patrick’s Cathedral hosts thousands of parishioners who attend the traditional Midnight Mass, also known as Misa de Gallo, Father Salvo expressed that for this season’s Misa de Gallo, more than 20,000 people applied since the middle of this year for tickets that are free to the public.

“Unfortunately, we no longer have tickets available for the Midnight Mass on December 24th along with Cardinal Timothy Dolan, but that will not have to be a limitation for the community to join us, as the Mass will be broadcast on television on WPIX, broadcast on radio on The Catholic Channel on Sirius XM, as well as transmitted live via streaming,” explained Father Salvo. 

The Archdiocese of New York encourages its parishioners to celebrate Christmas and join in the local festivities at its nearly 300 parishes throughout the city. Those people wishing to follow the Midnight Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, on December 24th, can join us from home by clicking the following link:  



The Archdiocese of New York serves the pastoral and spiritual needs of 2.5 million Catholics in nearly 300 parishes throughout its three boroughs of New York City and seven counties to the north. The archdiocese includes 172 Catholic schools serving more than 53,000 students, helps more than 400,000 individuals each year through Catholic Charities, and provides compassionate care to patients and families through ArchCare, the healthcare ministry. The Good NewsroomTM is the digital news outlet of the archdiocese with daily updates and stories about the good works of the Catholic Church in our area. Learn more at and

Media contact: 

Daniela Botero


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