WHAT: Annual Red Mass for members of the judiciary and legal community
WHEN: Sunday, October 7, 2018, 10:00 a.m.
WHO: Most Reverend Robert J. Carlson, Archbishop of St. Louis, principal celebrant; Most Reverend Shawn McKnight, Bishop of Jefferson City, homilist
WHERE: Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis (4431 Lindell)
ST. LOUIS – Most Reverend Robert J. Carlson, Archbishop of St. Louis, will celebrate the Annual Red Mass for members of the judiciary, public service officials, and the legal community on Sunday, October 7, at the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis beginning at 10:00 a.m. Most Reverend Shawn McKnight, Bishop of Jefferson City, MO, will deliver the homily.
“The Red Mass is an opportunity for those in the legal profession to gather as a sign of civic unity and to pray for guidance from the Holy Spirit — the source of wisdom, understanding, counsel, and fortitude,” Archbishop Carlson said. “It is God, our final and absolute judge, from whom all law and justice flows.”
The Red Mass is celebrated at the opening of the judicial term in October. With roots dating to the 13th century, the tradition was introduced in the United States in 1928 when a group of Catholic lawyers gathered in St. Andrew’s Cathedral in New York City. A Red Mass was first celebrated in the Archdiocese of St. Louis in 1943. Presidents, vice presidents, members of Congress, and Supreme Court justices often attend the Red Mass in Washington, D.C.
Attorneys, legal professionals, those serving in the legislative and judicial branches of government, and public service officials of all faiths are invited to participate in this centuries-old tradition.
The Red Mass is supported by the St. Thomas More Society. Sir Thomas More, councilor to Henry VIII and Lord High Chancellor of England from October 1529 to 16 May 1532, refused to acknowledge the king as head of the Church of England, refused to take the Oath of Supremacy, was convicted of treason and beheaded in 1535. More was canonized (made a Saint) by Pope Pius XI in 1935. St. Thomas More is the patron saint of civil servants and politicians.