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:
Barbara Case Speers: Hear today, gone tomorrowReading the headline above, I'm certain you are ready to grab a red pen and correct the typo, but wait: There's a reason for it. I'd like you to think about what it takes to be a good listener, and why we should listen more carefully to others. Throughout...
Mercy Sister Jeanne-Margaret McNally: Right of expressionAccording to Church law, those engaged in sacred disciplines (theology, philosophy, canon law, Church history) have the freedom of inquiry and expressing their opinion on matters in which they have expertise, while observing submission to the...
Rick Rotondi: Seeing as the pope seesThe Jubilee Year of Mercy has been an exciting one. But today will be its highlight. My Saint Benedict Press colleagues and I are attending Pope Francis' general audience, days before Holy Week in St. Peter's Square. A month before I'd sent...
Deacon James H. Toner : What we know that ain't so: 'Deusapathy'?What we think is the right road I don't know and, frankly, I don't care if God exists. I leave that to poets, priests and preachers. Anyway, it's not as though I see God and talk with Him every day. It's not as if He gives me a raise at work...
Sister Mary Raphael: Come and seeYouth is a time when people naturally start seeking answers about the reason for their existence. It is a time for dreaming dreams and looking to the future with hope and enthusiasm. Questions arise: "What do I want to do? What will I be? How...
Mercy Sister Jeanne-Margaret McNally: Christian educationThe Christian faithful have the right to a Christian education. Church law 217 states: "Since they are called by baptism to lead a life in keeping with the teaching of the gospel, the Christian faithful have the right to a Christian education...
Father Deacon Kevin Bezner Why are the faces of saints arresting?After looking at a photograph of St. John of Kronstadt (a Russian Orthodox Christian presbyter and a member of the synod of the Russian Orthodox Church who lived from 1829 to 1908) and thinking of other images of saints he had seen, a friend...
LETTERS FROM OUR READERS
Women volunteers are vital to prison ministryI am a prison ministry volunteer at St. Margaret of Scotland Church in Maggie Valley. It was of great interest that I read the prison ministry article in the March 4 edition of Catholic News...
Contraception: A rejection of God's gift of love and communion"Creating the human race in His own image..., God inscribed in the humanity of man and woman the vocation, and thus the capacity and responsibility, of love and communion" (Catechism of the Catholic...
Bad choice for headline
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. 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. Listen to homily podcasts.
- 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