Udupi : The blessings of Holy Oils and Chrism mass held at Milagres Cathedral, Kallianpur of Udupi Diocese on Thursday, 7th April, 2022. His Lordship Most Rev Dr. Gerald Isaac Lobo, Most Rev Dr. Gerald Isaac Lobo, Bishop of Udupi Diocese concelebrated the Solemnly Eucharistic celebrations along with diocesan and religious 73 priests.
In the morning, the diocesan pre-synod meeting was held at Milagres Tri-centenary Hall with all the diocesan and religious priests headed by the diocese bishop till noon. At 4pm, prior to the mass, the Bishop along with all the priests gathered at Milagres Tri-centenary Hall and proceeded towards the Milagres Cathedral.
During the Chrism mass which is usually held in the Cathedral of the diocese and blessed the three kinds of sacred oils, all of which signify the work of the Holy Spirit and symbolize it in that oil “Serves to Sweeten, to Strengthen, to render Supple”.
In his homily, Bishop Gerald Issac Lobo pointed out the role and responsibilities of priests in their mission to serve God. However, the Bishop characterized four tasks as a priest to serve God. By prayer one acknowledges God’s power and goodness. It is therefore an act of the virtue of priests implying the deepest reverence for God and habituating a person to look to him for everything. Prayer presupposes faith in God and hope in his goodness. Priests, somehow, not only depend on religious manners, but need to indulge in prayer. We are witness to the loopholes of priests as a whole. Priests should actively participate in Eucharistic celebrations, adoration, Contrition/Repentance, gratitude, petition or intercession, leading worship and sacraments, teaching and applying the truth of the Gospel and so on.
Secondly, as part of ordination, diocesan priests and deacons promise obedience to God and to their Bishops. Priests who are part of a religious order profess vows of obedience to the authorities of their religious community. Priests need to close in relationship with their Bishops. If priests do not obey the Bishop which means the priest does not fulfil his mission of serving the God. A bishop is a brother to his priests and like any fraternal relationship-at times it can be a test for both. A bishop is an ordained minister who holds the fullness of the sacrament of holy orders and responsible for teaching doctrine. Priests are united with the bishop in sacerdotal dignity and at the same time depend on them in the exercise of their pastoral functions, they are called to be the bishop’s prudent co-workers. They form around their bishop the presbyterium which bears responsibility with him for the particular church.
Thirdly, priests should coordinate with other priest brothers to serve others, to contribute a positive attitude toward pastoral ministry. A priest should bring other priests together to serve God in the sense of brotherhood. One cannot speak with pride himself to other priests.
Fourthly, priests should bring faithful people together. The Holy Spirit is present whenever believers gather together. God has given talent to bring his people together. It is the spiritual power of a priest to bring believers together. Priests are mediators between God and the faithful. The priest shall be for the people in different ways, the Bishop said.
Meanwhile, during the mass, priests asked to stand and renew the promises made on their ordination time and witnessed the priests who again pledged their lives and love to Jesus.
At the end, Rector of the Cathedral Very Rev Fr. Valerian Mendonca gave the words of gratitude to all concerned including the Bishop, priests and clergy of the diocese. The Bishop also thanked the Rector of the Cathedral and all concerned on the success of 10th year of Chrism mass.
Meanwhile, the sponsor of the celebrations, Mr & Mrs Preema Lewis honoured the Bishop with a decorated candle. Soft drinks served to all the participants after the mass. Around 73 diocesan priests including Very Rev Fr. Stany Basil Lobo, all five deanery deans and other religious priests were present. Some nuns of the diocese also present during the mass.
The Udupi district had been a part of the Diocese of Mangalore since 1887. The Udupi diocese was inaugurated in 15th October 2012.by Apostolic Nunicio of India Salvatore Pennacchio at Milagres Cathedral. Bishop Gerald Isaac Lobo was appointed the first Bishop of Udupi diocese.
The three Holy Oils are :
The Oil of Catechumens ("Oleum Catechumenorum" or "Oleum Sanctum") used in Baptism along with water, in the consecration of churches, in the blessing of Altars, in the ordination of priests, and, sometimes, in the crowning of Catholic kings and queens.
The Holy Chrism ("Sanctum Chrisma") or "Oil of Gladness," which is olive oil mixed with a small amount of balm or balsam. It is used in Confirmation, Baptism, in the consecration of a Bishop, the consecration of various things such as churches, chalices, patens, and bells.
It is appropriate that the oil of the sick, the oil of the Catechumens and the Holy Chrism which are blessed by the Bishop during the Chrism mass, be presented to and received by the local parish community. The reception of the holy oil may take place at Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday or any other day after the celebration of chrism mass. In Udupi Diocese this year due to busy schedule on Holy Thursday or other reason, the diocese's Chrism Mass with the blessings of Holy Oils held on Thursday, 7th April, 2022 at Milagres Cathedral, Kallianpur.
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