Pope Francis will not preside over end of year Vespers and the solemn changing of the Te Deum this evening, 31 December, in St. Peter’s Basilica or over Holy Mass for the Solemnity of Mary the Mother of God on 1 January due to “painful sciatica.”

A statement released by the Holy See Press Office said the traditional end of year celebration on Thursday evening will be presided over by Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, Dean of the College of Cardinals, while the Mass on New Year’s Day will be celebrated by Cardinal Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin.

Pope Francis however will pray the Angelus from the Apostolic Library and address the faithful at noon on 1 January 2021.