Students, faculty, and staff members at The Catholic University of America were called to unity and action during this year’s Mass of the Holy Spirit, which took place in the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception on Aug. 30.
The Mass is an annual tradition for the University, held at the beginning of each school year to gather students in prayer. This year’s Mass, which was broadcast live on EWTN and CatholicTV, was celebrated by Rev. Jude DeAngelo, O.F.M. Conv., University chaplain and director of Campus Ministry.
In his homily, Father Jude encouraged members of the University community to invoke the Holy Spirit for strength and guidance in their daily lives. In light of the recent abuse crisis within the Church, he said Catholics should rely on the Holy Spirit to find unity toward a common mission: listening to and ministering to abuse victims.
“Broken, humbled but united as the Body of Christ we need to minister to all abuse victims and all the voiceless in our society,” he said. “The Catholic Church must take the lead in this ministry and not wait for others to do it.”
Father Jude also called on the University community to keep hope in the Resurrection, saying, “We, the people of God cannot abandon ship or lose hope in Christ or His Advocate the Holy Spirit.
“We can either choose to attend the sails together through this storm of doubt and fear or we can ignore again the iceberg of truth and go down into the deep,” he said.
University President John Garvey also addressed the University community at the end of Mass, encouraging students to seek guidance from the Holy Spirit as they work to achieve personal holiness and root out abuse within the church. Garvey also spoke about prayer, and how spiritual traditions like the Mass of the Holy Spirit can have new importance during times of crisis.
“The Mass we celebrate today, invoking the help and intercession of the Holy Spirit, is certainly the most fitting, and perhaps useful, contribution we can offer to make things better,” he said.