Mass of Holy Chrism

posted by Mike on March 18th, 2008

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Bishops McManus and Reilly chat outside St. Paul’s Cathedral before the Chrism Mass.

Rocco Palmo:

In the majority of Stateside dioceses, whether in their cathedrals or even larger parish churches, the Chrism Mass — the lone “family reunion” mandated by the rubrics — is happening today.

There was no noon mass at the cathedral today, so my friends and I went to the Chrism Mass before our Lenten prayer vigil for an end to the Iraq War.

The Chrism Mass takes its name from the last of the three oils blessed during the rite, which are then used throughout the diocese for the next year.

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Tom Lewis does a little anti-war “pre-vigiling” at the cathedral before mass. More of us assembled across the street afterwards. I was happy that several priests came over to share words or hugs of support.

I’d never been to one of these before. The bishop blessed the year’s holy oil and priests renewed their “commitment to priestly service.” A very long standing ovation for Auxiliary Bishop George E. Rueger, who celebrated his 50th year as a priest and gave a great homily directed at the many Catholic school kids in attendance.

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