We were in Rome for Easter – which unsurprisingly, is an event that makes the city super crowded and cray cray. But we decided to make the most of our time there during the holiday and attend an (English language) Easter Mass in Vatican City.
Turns out, trying to research churches that have an English mass is pretty much impossible. That information just doesn’t exist anywhere on the internet. Unless, of course, you understand more Italian and/or Latin than we do (in which case, you probably aren’t looking for an English language Mass).
So here’s a quick “How to Attend English Mass in Vatican City” guide that’s actually written in English. Hallelujah! 🙌
The church that you’re looking for is called Sant’Anna. It’s located just off the Borgo Pio. (See map.)
As you walk up, you’ll come to a gate that looks like this.
Assuming that you’re dressed appropriately (no bare shoulders or knees), you can go through the smaller gate on the right, and then walk up those steps and into the church.
This is the gate! And since I’m wearing what is essentially a fancy snuggie, I’m in!
If you try to go anywhere else, the Swiss guard will stop you. The bigger gate near the church is not a public entrance to Vatican City. The two main entrances for tourists are 1) The Vatican Museum, or 2) St. Peter’s Basilica.
Yes, that is his real uniform. Yes, he is trained to use that halberd. Yes, they probably get sick of tourists taking pictures all day erryday. Aaand yes, I did it anyway.
Step in the doors and you will be greeted with a beautiful church and an English-speaking congregation.
The English Mass is every Sunday at 15:30 (aka 3:30pm). We arrived at 15:00, thinking that Easter Mass would be super crowded. Nah. Turns out we actually doorbusted the place – we were the first ones there. So if you want to take a picture of the empty church, get there 30 minutes early. Otherwise, 5-10 minutes would probably suffice.
That’s it! Pretty simple. Now just get ready to stand, sit, kneel, repeat.