Chrism Mass brings 'life, hope and joy' during Holy Week
CHARLOTTE — Bishop Peter J. Jugis celebrated the annual Chrism Mass at the Cathedral of St. Patrick in Charlotte on April 3. More than 80 priests concelebrated the two-hour Mass, including Bishop Emeritus William G. Curlin, retired bishop of the Diocese of Charlotte, and Abbot Placid Solari, O.S.B., abbot of Belmont Abbey.
During the Chrism Mass, held each year during Holy Week prior to Easter, priests of the diocese renew their commitment of service to the Church, and Bishop Jugis blesses the holy oils used in the sacraments.
Consecrated religious and hundreds of lay faithful packed into the cathedral to hear the Good News of the Gospel and witness the sacred tradition of the blessing of the sacramental chrism.
Transitional Deacons Jason Barone, Matthew Codd and Peter Shaw also served the Mass. The oils blessed during the Chrism Mass will be used in their ordination to the priesthood on Saturday, June 2, at St. Mark Church in Huntersville.
"The Second Vatican Council Constitution 'Lumen Gentium' reminds us that the common priesthood of the faithful and the ministerial or hierarchical priesthood are ordered each toward each other, and that each in its own way shares in the one priesthood of Christ," said Bishop Jugis at the beginning of his homily.
"How interesting that at this Chrism Mass where priests gather to renew their priestly promises and demonstrate their communion with their bishop and their concelebration, that there should also abound references to the priesthood of the faithful."
Bishop Jugis referred to the readings from Isaiah 61: 1-3 and Revelation 1: 5-8, which were read during the Liturgy of the Word.
"These references remind us that we are ordained priests for service to the whole people of God, that priesthood is service ... There is a marvelous complementarity of the ministerial priesthood and the priesthood of the faithful – and all of this during the Chrism Mass," he added.
After the homily, the priests of the diocese made their renewal of commitment to priestly service, responding with a resounding "I am" to Bishop Jugis' inquiries about their resolve to faithfully minister to the people of God.
"You teach, you guide, you shepherd, whether convenient or inconvenient, whether it is accepted or not accepted ... the priest is absolutely essential to the world's salvation. Jesus entrusts His Real Presence in the Eucharist to you," Bishop Jugis said.
"Where would the world be without the priest's ministry and witness to Christ's love?"
As the vessels containing the sacred oils were brought forth to be blessed, Bishop Jugis prayed for the Holy Spirit to come upon them, praying for the people who will receive the holy oils used in the blessing of the sick and the candidates for baptism, as well as for those who will receive the sacred chrism in the sacraments of initiation and holy orders. He added balsam to the olive oil and also breathed over the glass vessels containing the oils.
At the conclusion of the Chrism Mass, he thanked everyone for their faithful service to the Church and to the diocese, and he encouraged everyone gathered to remember that "Jesus is our life. He is our hope. He is our joy."
— SueAnn Howell, staff writer (Photos by SueAnn Howell and Patricia Guilfoyle)
Editor's note: A photo gallery and video highlights from the Chrism Mass are featured below. And be sure to check our website each day for more coverage from Holy Week observances, as the faithful of the Diocese of Charlotte prepare for the celebration of Christ's Resurrection on Easter Sunday.
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Video highlights from the Chrism Mass:
Batrice Adcock: Sexuality, the gift of communionPope St. John Paul II's "Theology of the Body" is a catechesis in defense of Pope Paul VI's 1968 encyclical "Humanae Vitae" ("Of Human Life"), which reaffirms Church teaching against artificial contraception, in the context of Catholic teaching...
Denise Bossert: Make this Advent a pilgrimage of the heartI have dipped my toes in the chaos of the Christmas-before-Advent scene. I've been to the mall once. I've landed on radio stations that play Christmas music around the clock – and quickly popped in my rosary CD to escape the noise. I've seen...
April Parker: Come to the stable this ChristmasWhile visiting family members one evening for an early Christmas dinner, my aunt suggested that my family drive by the live Nativity scene that her church was putting on just down the street. Since she made mention of live animals, my 4-year-old...
Dr. Kamila Valenta: Celebrating Christmas in peace is a privilegeThe times when the celebration of Christmas was banned in New England by the Puritans and people could be fined for saying "Merry Christmas" is now an amusing tale from a long-forgotten historical past of this country. Today the vast majority...
Sister Constance Veit: Give the gift of 'presence' this ChristmasChristmas is the feast of encounter, the celebration of God's love and nearness. "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth," we read in St. John's Gospel. God became one of us! He united himself to every man, woman and...
Father Patrick Hoare: We don't speak up enough for lifeRecently, the newspaper in our city ran a series of stories about "cheaters" in the construction industry. It is estimated that more than one-third of contractors in our state do not follow the law in classifying and reporting the payroll of...
Mercy Sister Jeanne-Margaret McNally: What makes a marriage work?The one indispensable ingredient in marriage is communication. Communication requires active listening, using "I" statements, paying attention to one's feelings and to those of one's spouse, and learning how to "fight fair." Put another way,...
LETTERS FROM OUR READERS
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Thank you for commentary on recent Latino CatholicsRico De Silva's recent commentary entitled "Growing number of Latino Catholics in the U.S. flying below the Church's radar" was so spot on that it had me immediately thanking God, this column,...
FROM THE PASTORS
Read and listen to homilies posted regularly by pastors at parishes within the Diocese of Charlotte:
- Fr. Roger Arnsparger at St. John the Baptist in Tryon
- Fr. Frank Cancro at Queen of the Apostles
- Fr. Jason Christian at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Patrick Earl at St. Peter in Charlotte
- Fr. Matthew Kauth at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Timothy Reid at St. Ann in Charlotte
- Fr. Christopher Riehl's archive from St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Benjamin Roberts at Our Lady of Lourdes in Monroe
- Fr. Joshua Voitus at St. Mary, Mother of God Parish in Sylva, including homilies in Spanish
- Fr. Patrick Winslow at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Gospel reflection videos from St. Matthew Church
- Watch full Masses live and on demand, listen to homilies and reflections from Sacred Heart Church in Salisbury
- Listen and watch homilies from St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Listen to homilies from St. William Catholic Church in Murphy