Photo courtesy of the Archdiocese of Newark
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Newark NJ, The Archdiocese of Newark will honor women and men who are committed to consecrated or religious life during its 25th annual Consecrated Life Mass on Saturday, February 5, at 11 a.m. in Newark’s Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart.
Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., Archbishop of Newark, who is a religious with the congregation known as the Redemptorists, will preside over the Mass. All are welcome to attend, including priests and lay faithful eager to show gratitude for those in consecrated life. Attendees must enter through the Cathedral’s Ridge Street door and are strongly encouraged to wear face masks due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The Mass will also be livestreamed on the Archdiocese’s YouTube and Facebook pages for those who prefer to participate virtually.
A vocation to consecrated life takes many forms, which include members of religious institutes and associations: priests, sisters, brothers, consecrated virgins, hermits, and members of secular institutes. It is one in which an individual is dedicated completely to love and live for God and His Church. World Day for Consecrated Life will be celebrated in the universal Church on Wednesday, February 2, and in parishes over the weekend of February 5-6.
“Those in consecrated life are the prophetic voice of the Church,” said Sister Patricia M. Wormann, O.P., the Archdiocese’s Delegate for Religious. “They are a gift to the Church because their experience of contemplative prayer allows them to challenge the Church and its vision. Catherine of Siena, who was a lay member of the Dominican Order, even challenged the Pope to leave France and take his rightful place in Rome, which changed the face of the Church. So it’s important that we honor them for the difference they make.”
In addition to recognizing the work of those in consecrated life, the Mass will also acknowledge religious who are celebrating anniversaries in the Church by a reading of their names and a congratulatory note from Cardinal Tobin. A donation in the names of each celebrant also will be made to a charitable cause, and a gathering in their honor will be held later this year.
The Archdiocese’s Consecrated Life Mass started in 1997 as a way of celebrating the first World Day of Prayer for Consecrated Life. It has become a beloved tradition among its 52 congregations of religious women, 22 congregations of religious men, three consecrated virgins, one consecrated hermit, and numerous secular institutes. More than 200 people typically attend the Mass each year.
To learn more about the Vocations for Religious Life in the Archdiocese of Newark, visit https://www.rcan.org/offices-and-ministries/vocations.
The Archdiocese of Newark, under the leadership of Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., the sixth archbishop of Newark, serves approximately 1.3 million Catholics in 212 parishes throughout the counties of Bergen, Essex, Hudson, and Union. The Archdiocese serves the northern New Jersey community through faith, education, and social services. To learn more, visit www.rcan.org.