The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring glad tidings to the poor.

He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives
and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free,
and to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord.

Rolling up the scroll, he handed it back to the attendant and sat down,
and the eyes of all in the synagogue looked intently at him.
He said to them,
“Today this Scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.”

Today we celebrate two very distinct Masses/Liturgies.  The first is the Chrism Mass where the priests of our Diocese (Archdiocese) gather with the Bishop of the Diocese and consecrate the three oils they will use throughout the year.  For a more detailed description of the Chrism Mass – open this hyperlink.

Our second Mass celebrates the Institution of our Holy Eucharist.  This is the Mass where we honor our Lord’s final Passover meal with his Apostles; it is where Christ told us to memorialize Him whenever we eat of this bread – His flesh, an drink of His cup – His blood.

Today is a very special day in the Church.

Today is also a very special day in our family.  Our oldest daughter Grace turns 30 today.  Happy Birthday Grace Anna.  One quick story from that day 30 years ago.  I was sitting on the side of the bed talking to Sarah.  She was exhausted after going through 29 hours of labor.  As we were talking, the phone next to her bed rang so I answered it.  The person on the other side of the line told me he was a professional photographer who worked exclusively for St. Mary’s Hospital.  He went on about his experience and blah, blah, blah – if this had been my second child I would have hung up but being new to the game, I listened to his sales pitch and was waiting to hear how much this was going to cost me.  As he was finishing up, he made a comment that still sticks with me today.  We even take pictures of the ugly children!  What he didn’t know was that Grace was born with the assistance of what I’ll refer to as the salad spoons because of the way she was positioned in the birth canal.  Long story short, she came out with a “cone” head.  What didn’t know is that the salesman was my oldest brother John calling to prank me.  We both got a good laugh out of it.  So happy birthday Grace – enjoy your day (and get to Mass!!!).

Do something great for our Lord today – even though this isn’t a “Holy Day of Obligation”, get yourself to Mass tonight and celebrate/commemorate the first Mass ever said some 2000 + years ago.  Then stay after Mass for awhile and think about all the sacrifices we are about to commemorate on Friday.

God’s will, not mine, be done.

Be not afraid; just have faith.

Jesus, I trust in You.

He must increase; I must decrease.

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