Confirmations in Kansas City
"Signo te signo Crucis et confirmo te in chrismate salutis."
On Sunday, October 10th, His Excellency, the Most Reverend Robert W. Finn, Bishop of Kansas City-Saint Joseph, was solemnly received at Old Saint Patrick Oratory by Canon William Avis, the rector, and conferred the Sacrament of Confirmation in the Extraordinary Form on seventeen candidates of all ages.
In his sermon, His Excellency explained the various rites in which this sacrament is conferred. He said, "The newly confirmed are 'sealed' with Holy Chrism, the sweet fragrance of which reminds us of our dignity as children of the Father. The many good works which the Holy Ghost will inspire in them—when they are carried out in the state of sanctifying grace, and offered out of a motive of love of God—are a pleasing odor to God, and are helpful to their salvation and that of others." Later on, "To remind the newly confirmed that, like Christ and the apostles, they must courageously bear adversities and persecutions for the sake of the Catholic Faith, the bishop gives each recipient a slight blow on the cheek. It is rightly received also as a sign of peace, as I welcome the new soldier to greater duty within the Church Militant."
Following the Confirmations, Canon William Avis celebrated a Low Mass with organ music and motets in His Presence. The diocesan Bishop kneeling at a Faldstool in the center of the sanctuary is symbolic of the role of the bishop as pastor to lead his flock to streams of living waters which is, of course, the holy sacrifice of the Mass by which Christ's act of Redemption is renewed and applied to us. During the Mass after the Gospel reading, the Bishop is presented the Missal to kiss, and, after the Agnus Dei, he receives the Pax, or Peace, using an instrument called the Pax-Brede. His Excellency was assisted during the Confirmations and the Mass by Father Evan Harkins, a newly ordained priest of the diocese of Kansas City-Saint Joseph, and Deacon Ralph Wehner, the Director of the Office of Worship for the diocese.
Following the Mass, His Excellency greeted the faithful and received a gift showing the gratitude of the Institute and the faithful of the Oratory. He expressed his thanks to the Institute for the ministry it provides in the diocese. There was then a festive reception held at I. Donnelly Hall.
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