Hundreds of diocesan priests gathered at St Chad's Cathedral on Wednesday 27 March to renew their vows at the annual Chrism Mass.

At the Mass, the oil of Chrism, used for baptisms, confirmations, ordinations and consecration, the oil of catechumens, used for the baptism of adults and older children being received into the church, and the oil for the sacrament of the sick were blessed.

These oils are distributed into our parishes to be used throughout the year. 

The Chrism Mass is also a celebration of priesthood, with Archbishop Bernard Longley celebrating with our Diocesan priests the renewal of the priestly promises they made on their day of Ordination.

As the Easter Triduum starts tomorrow on Maundy Thursday, let us reflect on our Lent. Did we achieve what we set out to do? If we have, let us thank God for his help, but if we haven't then we need not be despondent but take the opportunity of the Triduum to get close to God.

Let us also give thanks for our priests- let us pray for their ministry and that there may be more vocations to the priesthood.

Archbishop Bernard's Homily

The spirit of the Lord has been given to me, for he has anointed me.

"Those words of the Prophet Isaiah resonate with special significance when we hear them during Holy Week.  We remember that this was the scripture reading chosen by Our Lord at the Synagogue in Nazareth.  

"There in his home-town he tells the congregation on the Sabbath day that he is the anointed one, the Messiah, who has been sent to bring good news to the poor, to bind up hearts that are broken.  

"The same anointed one, the Christ, became the crucified one whose passion and death we shall commemorate solemnly this Friday.

"His sharing of the Eucharist with the twelve, and through them with all of us, is the historic moment which we shall recall in the Mass of the Lord’s Supper tomorrow evening, at the beginning of the Easter Triduum.

"In this Mass of Chrism we thank Our Lord for having called us to share in his priesthood through baptism and as ministers of his Church through priestly ordination.

"The anointed one anointed us when we were ordained so that we in turn may go out and bring his strengthening, healing and sanctifying touch into the lives of others."

Read full homily 

Diocesan Prayer for Vocations

Heavenly Father, we ask you to send labourers into your harvest.

Inspire, in the hearts of your people, vocations to the priesthood, diaconate and religious life.

Bless our families with a spirit of generosity, so that those whom you call have the courage to give themselves to your Church in faith.

Through Christ our Lord.


Vocations in the Archdiocese

Photo Gallery

The Chrism Mass