For many years the Archdiocese of Los Angeles had not had a ‘White Mass’ – a Mass held to honor the work of health care professionals, so named for the white garb most commonly worn by doctors, nurses, and others who are engaged in the healing ministry.
Two years ago when our MDA Board of Directors took on the task of a 5 year strategic plan – this was one of the items that came forward, re-introducing this celebration in the Archdiocese. We wrote to Cardinal Mahony who welcomed the idea and we were partnered with the dynamic woman who (among other titles) is the Director of Health Affairs for the Archdiocese, Sr. Angela Hallahan. Working together last year with a small but dedicated committee this annual event was re-introduced with wonderful success and we immediately looked to ways to grow the celebration for 2010.
On Sunday we will gather again at Holy Family in South Pasadena; ‘Blessing Healers – Celebrating Health’. The committee has grown, the numbers have increased, and this Sunday promises to be a wonderful opportunity to bring together those who give so much of themselves in service to others. One of the highlights of last year’s Mass was the blessing of hands, a moment when the healers were invited to stand and extend their hands, palm up, to receive a blessing. As moving as it was to witness these humble individuals stand, bow their heads, and raise their hands, I also watched a doctor who had been practicing medicine for more than 40 years brush away a tear.
Let us pray for all who minister to the health of others. May they always see Jesus in their patients, may they feel the breath of the Holy Spirit as they bear the burdens of this ministry and may the know their work is in partnership with our loving Father.