6 MARCH 2015. All the bishops of Florida's Church gathered this week in Tallahassee to celebrate the 40th annual Red Mass of the Holy Spirit.
In the global Church the Red Mass is an 800-year old tradition, through which the guidance of the Holy Spirit is prayerfully sought to be poured out upon the persons within the government and the legal profession in the carrying out of their duties for the benefit of society. In Florida, the Red Mass has been celebrated now for forty years during the opening weeks of Florida's annual Legislative Session.
Archbishop Wenski, Archbishop of Miami, was the principal celebrant. This year's homilist was Bishop Peter Baldacchino, Auxiliary Bishop of Miami.
Below are a few snipets from Bishop Baldacchino's homily, which spoke candidly and eloquently of the need for humility and sense of service, in following Christ, by all in government and the practice of law:
With Christ there comes about a reversal of values.
Christ Jesus embodies what service really means. [However,] He was not saying that we should never come first.
[But,] [w]hoever wishes to be great among you should be servants.
It is power that gives authority. But, service gives much more.
All human values, particularly those that we Americans can experience in our nation: justice, freedom, liberty, are important instruments that enable us to live in a world that can make of a human person what he or she is meant to be. However, these instruments in themselves can never be sufficient to achieve true human happiness. They are not an end in themselves.
[In seeking] social justice, the end should be the "other," not directed at ourselves.The full text of the Bishop Baldacchino's homily can be read here.
Our society needs to be renewed. This renewal needs to begin with our conversation in humility [to Christ Jesus].