MONTEREY – The annual Mass of Chrism will be celebrated in the Diocese of Monterey in California on Holy Tuesday, 30 March 2021 at 11am at the pro-cathedral of Madonna del Sasso in Salinas. The Most Rev. Daniel E. Garcia, 5th Bishop of Monterey in California, will be the principal celebrant.
What is the Chrism Mass? In 1988, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments promulgated the document Paschalis Solemnitatis: The Preparation and Celebration of the Easter Feasts. Still in force today, the document says:
The Chrism Mass which the bishop concelebrates with his presbyterium and at which the holy chrism is consecrated and the oils blessed, manifests the communion of the priests with their bishop in the same priesthood and ministry of Christ. The priests who concelebrate with the bishop should come to this Mass from different parts of the diocese, thus showing in the consecration of the chrism to be his witnesses and cooperators, just as in their daily ministry they are his helpers and counselors…
Traditionally the Chrism Mass is celebrated on the Thursday of Holy Week. If, however, it should prove to be difficult for the clergy and people to gather with the bishop, this rite can be transferred to another day, but one always close to Easter…
There should be only one celebration of the Chrism Mass given its significance in the life of the diocese, and it should take place in the cathedral or, for pastoral reasons, in another church which has a special significance (nn. 35-36).
In a message published online, Bishop Garcia said that due to the pandemic, only priests, deacons, their wives, and representatives of religious communities present in the Diocese will be able to attend this year’s Chrism Mass in person. The Mass will be live-streamed on the diocese’s website.
The Bishop concluded his message by saying, “Let us continue to pray for each other that we may be able to safely come out of this pandemic and soon resume our normal liturgical celebrations”.
Updated: 25 March 2021 – 2:08pm PDT