Thursday, April 02, 2009

2009 Diocese of New Ulm Chrism Mass

Our diocese had its Chrism Mass tonight. It was held at Our Lady of the Lakes Catholic Church in Spicer Minnesota. This is a very new church and a very modern one. It as a very different setting that the last two years which were held at the cathedral in New Ulm. This year is also the first Chrism Mass celebrated by our new Bishop John LeVoir.

We always try to make this Mass each year. There is something about it that I find very uplifting. I am not sure what it is, but when I leave this Mass I feel rejuvenated. Maybe it's because all the priests gathered together with the Bishop, or the fact that incense is used. I don't know why, but this Mass holds a special place in my heart.

Tonight's Mass was a beautiful Mass. A lot of incense was used with is always a plus in my book. Another plus is that the bishop chanted the prayers. I love it when priests chant in Mass. I wish they would do it more often.

In addition to about 35 priests there were also two deacons and several seminarians. One thing that struck me tonight during the Mass was the reverence that our seminarians displayed as they did the jobs assigned to them. They are the future of our diocese and I think we will be in good hands.

During his homily the Bishop spoke of the need for the priests to strengthen their relationship with Christ so that they can use that relationship to help them do the things that priests do. I think this is important. Unless you are a priest you really have no idea just what the life of a priest is like. I suspect that there might be an aspect of loneliness in the life of a priest where they need to have that strong personal relationship with Christ to make it though. I'm just guessing though.

After Mass it was interesting to watch my boys. They went looking for the former priests of our parish to talk to them. My youngest son was on a mission to find them all and then when he had done that he said, "Now, I have to find the bishop," and he led us to where the bishop was and we all shook his hand. My son was so tickled that he shook Bishop LeVoir's hand. Only when that was done could we head for home.

This is kind of silly but in past years we have always sat by the center aisle and we have been able to smell the wonderful smell of the Chrism oil. This year we could not sit there and on the way home I was lamenting the fact that we did not get the smell the Chrism oil. I then rubbed my nose with the back of my hand and low and behold my hand smelled like Chrism. I thought about it for a moment and asked everyone in the car to smell the back of the hand they shook the bishop's hand with. We all smelled like Chrism oil. I guess the bishop gave us a small gift when we shook his hand. :)

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