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Toughest ticket in Chicago? Finding a spot at Easter Sunday Mass

With COVID-19 restrictions limiting capacity to 20%, here’s a guide to help last-minute worshipers find that rare in-person seat.

With COVID-19 restrictions, you won’t find full churches on Easter Sunday. Capacity has been capped at 20%.
Sun-Times

Easter is Sunday, one of the biggest days of the year for Christians.

Churches are usually packed with parishioners who would be squeezed into pews shoulder to shoulder. Those who couldn’t find a seat would stand in the back or attend an overflow Mass.

But this year with limited capacities, Easter Sunday Mass is the toughest ticket in town.

Coronavirus restrictions have limited churches to 20% capacity. With more people who have been vaccinated, there has been an influx of those wanting to attend in-person. But on Easter, those opportunities are limited.

Many churches streamed their services online during the pandemic. And this Sunday, there will be three televised local options. ABC7 will Easter Mass in English at noon. Univision will televise a Spanish Mass at 10 a.m. and Polvision will televise in Polish at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.

But for those who must find a spot in person, it’s a race to register and find those remaining elusive slots that are going fast.

Forget about the big downtown churches — Holy Name Cathedral, Old St. Pat’s, St. Peter’s, Old St. Mary’s, St. John Cantus — they are all are booked up, although check online for cancelations.

After sleuthing online — from A (St. Agatha) to Z (or W actually, St. William) — we’ve found the following options among Chicago parishes that have seats remaining as of mid-afternoon Friday. Click on the church name for registration link.

  • St. Agatha: 3147 W. Douglas Blvd. 50 slots left for 8 a.m. Mass and 48 left at 10:30 a.m.
  • St. Alphonsus: 1429 W. Wellington Ave. 15 slots remain for the lower church live stream at 9 a.m.
  • St. Andrew: 3546 N. Paulina St. There are no remaining reservations available, but there is a waiting list.
  • Assumption: 323 W. Illinois St. A few spots remain at the 8:30 a.m. Mass.
  • St. Bartholomew: 949 W. Patterson Ave. All English Masses are full. 60 slots left for 7 a.m. and 120 remain for 1 p.m.
  • St. Bede the Venerable: 8200 S. Kostner Ave. 150 spots remain for 8 a.m. Mass and 20 spots left for 10 a.m.
  • St. Cajetan: 445 W. 112th St. Only very limited spots at the noon Mass.
  • St. Christina: 11005 S. Homan Ave. 80 spots remain at the noon Mass.
  • Christ the King: 9235 S. Hamilton Ave. 15 spots remain at the 7 a.m. Mass.
  • St. Clement: 642 W. Deming Pl. Limited spots remain for the 11:15 a.m. lower chapel Mass.
  • St. Columbanus: 331 E. 71st St. About 75 spots remain for the 10 a.m. Mass.
  • St. Elizabeth: 50 E. 41st St. About 20 spots remain for the 9 a.m. Mass.
  • St. Eugene: 7958 W. Foster Ave. Limited spots remain for 11:30 a.m. Mass.
  • Five Holy Martyrs: 4327 S. Richmond St. Many spots remain for Sunday.
  • St. Francis of Assisi: 813 W. Roosevelt. A few spots remain for the 5:30 p.m. Spanish Mass.
  • St. Hedwig: 226 N. Hoyne Ave. 60 spots remain for the 8 a.m. in English. Many spots left for the 9:30 a.m. Polish and 1 p.m. Spanish Masses.
  • St. Helen: 2315 W. Augusta Blvd. Slots remain for the 9:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Masses.
  • Holy Innocents: 743 N. Armour St. Most Masses have available spots. The noon Mass is very limited.
  • St. Hyacinth Basilica: 3636 W. Wolfram St. Spots remain for the 7:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. Masses.
  • Immaculate Conception: 2745 W. 44th St. Many spots available.
  • St. Jerome: 1709 W. Lunt Ave. Many spots remain.
  • St. John Berchmans: 517 W. Logan Blvd. Limited spots remain at the 8:15 a.m. Mass
  • St. John Fisher: 10234 S. Washtenaw Ave. 70 spots remain for the 8 a.m. Mass.
  • St. Margaret of Scotland: 9830 S Vincennes Ave. Registration is available at the door.
  • St. Michael: 1633 N. Cleveland Ave. Plenty of seats remain for the 7 a.m. sunrise Mass
  • Nativity of Our Lord: 53 W. 37th St. About 60 spots remain for the 8 a.m. Mass.
  • Our Lady of Lourdes: 4640 N. Ashland Ave. No registration needed for 8 a.m. Plenty of spots left for the 1:30 p.m. Mass.
  • St. Pius V: 1919 S. Ashland Ave. Plenty of seats for the 11:30 a.m. Mass.
  • Queen of All Saints Basilica: 6280 N. Sauganash Ave. No reservations required for the 7 a.m. parking lot Mass. Otherwise all Masses full.
  • Resurrection: 3043 N. Francisco. Limited spots remain for 10 a.m. Mass.
  • St. Robert Bellarmine: 4646 N. Austin Ave. Limited spots remain in the 9 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. overflow Masses.
  • Sacred Heart Croatian: 2864 E. 96th St. Plenty of spots remain for both the 8 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. Masses.
  • St. Stanislaus Kostka: 1351 W. Evergreen Ave. Many spots available for all Masses.
  • St. Turibius: 5646 S. Karlov Ave. Spots only remain at the 6 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. Masses.
  • St. Viator: 4170 W. Addison St. Slots remain for all Masses.
  • St. William: 2600 N. Sayre Ave. Many spots available for all Masses.