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On Tuesday, 5 April 2022, the Archdiocese of Kuala Lumpur celebrated the Chrism Mass at the Cathedral of St John the Evangelist, Kuala Lumpur. Almost 60 Diocesan and Religious priests, including several foreign priests participated in the Mass, which was celebrated by Archbishop Julian Leow. An important ceremony which takes place during the celebration of the Chrism Mass is the renewal of priestly promises. Archbishop Julian conveyed his appreciation to all priests in the Archdiocese for their dedication to their respective parishes, ministries as well as their community.

Each year at the Chrism Mass, we priests renew our commitment and promises made at our ordination into priesthood. We express our total re-dedication to the ministry and our personal faith into the priesthood, as a sign of closeness to Christ and His Church. We give thanks for the gift of the priesthood, which we treasure - as St Paul reminds us, “you have in you a spiritual gift… do not neglect it” (1 Timothy 4:12). We are reminded to be grateful for the Parishes in which we serve and to the Parishioners and community too. As priests, we are constantly called and challenged to be in communion with the Church, in order to carry out the mission of Christ.

On this day of re-dedication of our priestly life, the readings taken from Prophet Isaiah (61:1-3) and the Gospel of St Luke (4:18) remind us that, “the Spirit of the Lord has been given to me, for He has anointed me. He has sent me to bring the good news to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives and to give the blind new sight, to set the downtrodden free, to proclaim the Lord’s year of favour.”

This Holy Thursday, we pray for all priests that they may serve the people of God with joy, and that they may be cared for, supported and prayed for by the Church community so that they may grow in their priesthood with fraternal corrections. May the Lord give us the strength to grow in our priesthood despite our weaknesses.

The rite of blessing of oils begins after the renewal of priestly commitments. Here are some insights about these oils.

i) The oil of the Sick (Oleum Infirmorum - OI): The oil is administered to the sick in order to “safeguard their body, mind and spirit and to take away every pain, every infirmity and every sickness.”

ii) The oil of catechumens is also known as oil of Salvation (Oleum Catechumenorum or Oleum Sanctorum - OS): The oil is used in the Sacrament of baptism to strengthen the person being baptised, so that they turn away from sin and every foul spirit.

iii) The consecration of the oil of Sacred Chrism (Sacrum Chrisma - SC): The oil is used for the administration of the Sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation and for the ointment of the hands of priests and the heads of bishops at their priestly and Episcopal ordinations, respectively. It is also used for the rite of dedication of churches.

These sacred oils are recognised and used in the Sacraments of the Church. They bring us spiritual comfort and physical healing – they strengthen us with the power of the Holy Spirit.


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