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:
Deacon James H. Toner : What we know that ain't so: My conscienceWhat we think is the right road Poet William Ernest Henley famously said, "I am the master of my fate. I am the captain of my soul." People today cheer the mantra of nonconformity, of individual autonomy: "I gotta be me!" I celebrate me. I...
Victory of the Sexual Revolution presents evangelical possibilitiesThe legal dispute over same-sex "marriage" in the United States has now been decided, and in that contest the traditional Christian understanding of marriage lost. What you may be surprised to learn is that I welcome this defeat. Since I began...
Robert D. Potter Jr.: Same-sex 'marriage': What happens now?On June 26, five members of the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the states must grant the right to same-sex "marriage." As Justice Clarence Thomas pointed out in his dissent, this decision flies in the face of our own Declaration of Independence...
Deacon James Toner: What we know that ain't so: A false charityWhat we think is the right road Speaking recently, one American politician challenged church-goers (of course, he meant Catholics) to stop worrying so much about abortion and to start worrying more about poverty. The Church is too caught up...
Fred Gallagher: The men in my mother's kitchenI grew up with all brothers, so my mother's kitchen was constantly overrun by males. But it wasn't just my brothers or my uncles or the salesmen who worked with my father. No, over the years a large number of those men wore either cassocks or...
Rico De Silva: The face of Our Father"He who has seen me has seen the Father." (Jn 11:9) This Sunday we'll celebrate Father's Day. As the father of one daughter, this is cause for rejoicing. But as a Catholic, this is a great cause for gratitude and awe towards Our Heavenly Father,...
James H. Toner: What we know that ain't so: Personally opposedWhat we think is the right road I am all for Catholic teaching, but it is a private matter. We should admire Catholic politicians who do not permit their faith to influence their political judgment. They should not force their values down other...
LETTERS FROM OUR READERS
Remember our neighbors' griefTwo weeks ago I paid my respects by standing and praying outside Mother Emanuel A.M.E. Zion Church in Charleston, placing a bouquet of flowers on behalf of the people of Jacksonville, Florida's...
Too many of us lack courage to stand up for our faithI applaud Deacon James Toner for his commentary "Personally Opposed," published June 5 in the Catholic News Herald. Unfortunately, it was buried toward the back of the paper, when it should have...
Happy anniversary, SisterIt seems appropriate that during this Year for Consecrated Life, Sister Mary Hugh Mauldin is to celebrate a milestone anniversary: 60 years as a Sister of Mercy. I did not know Sister Mary Hugh...
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. 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