Bishop William Patrick Callahan celebrated the Chrism Mass with his brother priests at St. Joseph the Workman Cathedral, La Crosse, on March 27, 2018. “My dear brothers and sisters, the rich tradition of our holy Church teaches us, and we therefore, believe, that like Baptism and Confirmation, Holy Orders imprints the ordained with an indelible spiritual mark—namely, once ordained, one is a priest in time and eternity. Through the laying on of hands by the bishop and the prayer of consecration, the Holy Spirit conforms the ordained to Christ as Priest, Teacher, and Pastor,” Bishop Callahan stated in his homily.
The Chrism Mass is celebrated during Holy Week, when the bishop blesses the precious holy oils. These oils are then used by the priests in the diocese when administering the sacraments throughout the whole year. After Mass, the oils are sent out with each priest in the diocese. The unique liturgical celebration also gives priests an opportunity to celebrate Mass with their bishop and renew their commitment to priestly service before him. Bishop Callahan welcomed a new priest, Reverend Arul Joseph Visuvasam, to the diocese through the rite of incardination.
During the Chrism Mass, the bishop blesses the Oil of the Sick to be used in the sacrament of the anointing of the sick, and the Oil of Catechumens used in preparation for baptism. The bishop also consecrates the Holy Chrism used in baptism, confirmation and the holy orders.
More than 500 faithful gathered, along with many others online. You can watch the mass online below, and view the photos of the day by clicking the link.