Thursday, 1 April 2010

Chrism Mass 2010

This morning the diocesan Chrism Mass took place in the Cathedral, and the Lord blessed us with fine weather for the priests' annual walk through the Cathedral gardens. On these occasions the concelebrants tend to enter the Cathedral through the main west doors, and so form a public procession as they approach the church. At the Chrism Mass priests come, in many cases with some parishioners, from all parts of the Diocese. It is the occasion each year on which priests are asked to renew their commitment to service, and in this Year for Priests the Mass this renewal seemed particularly important. In his homily, the Bishop spoke about how the Holy Oils reveal the fundamental calling given to the priest. You can find the full text here.

After Mass, the three oils: the Oil of Catechumens, used just before baptism, the Oil of the Sick, used to anoint those who are ill, and the Oil of Chrism, which is used in baptism, confirmation and at ordinations, are distributed to the priests of the Diocese for them to take back to their own parish. The fact that all the oils used in the sacraments come from this one source reminds us of the unity of our Diocese. Now all those who came this morning have returned to their own parishes, ready to celebrate the great Triduum - the three days of Our Lord's suffering, death and resurrection. The Triduum begins here at the Cathedral with the Mass of the Lord's Supper, celebrated this evening at 7:30pm. The full Holy Week timetable can be found here.