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 Toner: What we know that ain't so: Gud EdjakashunWhat we think is the right road About five years ago, Mark Bauerlein challenged readers by contending that we must learn not to trust anyone under the age of 30. What he called "the dumbest generation" has achieved "viewer literacy," Bauerlein...
Father Tadeusz Pacholczyk: 'Redefining' marriage?In the current debate over gay "marriage," people sometimes ask: Who should define marriage? Democrats or Republicans in Congress? The Supreme Court? Should it be put to a referendum, allowing the majority to choose a definition? We can identify...
Robert D. Potter Jr.: What's wrong with homosexual marriage?The U.S. Supreme Court is set to consider whether a state is required to recognize homosexual "marriage" under the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. In the flood of secular media messages and accounts, many Catholics may be confused and even...
Anne Tinsdale: Offer it up"Offer it up": the great mantra of our beloved Catholic school nuns! What did they know that we can learn about sacrifice and suffering? On a purely human level the value and necessity of sacrifice and suffering is difficult to imagine, but...
Deacon James Toner: What we know that ain't so: Oppressive ChurchWhat we think is the right road Among the greatest champions of human liberty are Darwin, Freud, Marx and Nietzsche, all of whom would have agreed with Voltaire's expression of contempt for the Catholic Church: "Crush the infamous!" All we...
Allison Schumacher: St. Joseph: A saint to know"I do not remember even now that I have ever asked anything of him which he has failed to grant...I wish I could persuade everyone to be devoted to this glorious saint, for I have long experience of the great blessings which he can obtain from...
Deacon James Toner: What we know that ain't so: Holy warWhat we think is the right road
If ever there were an oxymoron – a contradiction in terms – it surely is "holy war." War is always horrible, always a great evil, always morally unjustifiable. The Catechism of the Catholic Church makes...
LETTERS FROM OUR READERS
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Abortion reversal kits give women a second chanceIt is a scary, cruel world nowadays. That anxiety can be multiplied tenfold when you are a pro-life emergency department health care provider, like me. The emergency department is filled with...
Tired rhetoric of race only creates division, not unityIn response to the Jan. 16 commentary "Race, bias and fear of 'the other,'" we were both compelled to write a response. Read original commentary here. As...
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