{Holy Week} Chrism Mass

If you live in the Diocese of Austin, today’s Chrism Mass takes place at St. William in Round Rock at 10:30am.  As I mentioned last year, I probably won’t be attending this Mass until 2016.  Nevertheless, it’s a beautiful Mass made even more beautiful by all those men on the altar, below the crucifix of Christ.  At the Chrism Mass, every priest in our Diocese renews his vows to the priesthood and obedience to the bishop and all the holy oils used throughout the year are blessed.  It is a mighty sight to see about 200 men, in vestments, worshipping God on the altar as they concelebrate Mass with the Bishop.  You gotta do this at least once in your lifetime.  Just be sure to get there early.  Everybody else wants a good seat, too!

The thing that strikes me about the Chrism Mass is its holy significance.  On Holy Saturday, hundreds of people in our diocese will officially join the church and become Catholic.  It is amazing.  Eleven years ago, Scott and I stood near the altar as sponsors and watched our two catechumens and their son (our Godson) join the church.  That was one of the most beautiful experiences in which I have been a part.  They were annointed with holy oils, blessed at the Chrism Mass, as they were confirmed.  The thing with Sacraments is they are part human, part divine.  The priest acts “in persona Christi” (in the person of Christ) as he annoints those men, women and children.

As a convert I’ve always appreciated the seriousness and the conviction in which we take our confirmation into the church.  It’s not just a “Hey, I believe” kind of thing, but rather prayerful study, reflection and community over a period of months.  We take time to examine the heart, to embrace the teachings and to question the faith.  When I joined the church – which is definitely another blog post for this weekend – it was after serious discussions with Scott and his parish priest.  It was a massive leap of faith, but one that defines who I am and what I believe.  I am proud to be a member of a church that doesn’t bend to secular whims, government mandates and fleeting leadership.  Our steadfastness over 2,000 years is our rock.  What can I say, I like predictability.

If you’re like me and you can’t make it to today’s Mass, offer up this simple prayer today:

“Dear God, please watch over our parish priest {name}.  Guide his decisions, ignite his faith, shower him with spiritual gifts and provide him with the support he needs to minister to your flock.  Amen.”

Go make it a great Tuesday.  Easter is almost here!


  1. Sabrina Perez on April 3, 2012 at 8:26 am

    Hi Kathryn, thanks to you I was able to locate the time of the Chrism Mass. While searching for the time I stumbled onto your website. Although I don’t have time to peruse today, I will be coming back. Have a blessed Holy Week!

  2. Janice on April 3, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    Thank you for this post and the nice prayer for our priests. As a convert myself I agree with all you have stated above. By making the choice to convert it has definitely defined what I believe and how I live my life.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.