In a break with tradition, the Chrism Mass was this year celebrated on Spy Wednesday (yesterday). For a long time the Diocese has always held its Chrism Mass on Maundy Thursday morning, but to give the clergy and people sufficient time for preparations for the Triduum, the Archbishop decided to change the day. Therefore, at 11:30am yesterday the Cathedral was full for the Annual Chrism Mass.
Every year the Diocese comes together, bishop, clergy and laity to bless the oils to be used int he Sacraments over the next year. The oils are presented to the Archbishop by representatives of the Diocese to whom the oils have a significance. For example, the Oil of Catechumens used in Baptism as a preparation for receiving the Sacrament was presented by a catechist who prepares people for baptism; the Oil of the Sick was presented by a chaplain from the local hospital; whilst the Oil of Chrism was presented by two young people whole will be anointed with the oil at Confirmation.
In addition to Blessing the Oils, the priests of the Diocese renewed their priestly ordination commitments to serve the people of the Diocese. The people, in their turn agreed to support their priests in their work.
The text of the Archbishop’s homily from the Chrism Mass can be found here.