Blue mass at St. Patrick's Catholic Church (Washington, D.C.)
|Observed by||Catholics, Other Christians|
|Significance||Honor veterans of the Public Safety field|
|Date||Varies by community|
A Blue Mass is a Mass celebrated annually in the Catholic Church for those employed in the "public safety field" (i.e. police officers, firefighters, correctional officers, 911 operators and EMS personnel). The color blue relates to the blue-colored uniforms predominantly used by these services. Similar to the Red Mass, the service honors those who have died in the line of duty and those currently serving as first responders. The Mass is an opportunity for the community to show gratitude to first responders and their families.
In Washington, D.C. the service is held in conjunction with National Police Week. Psalm 91:11, "For He will give His angels [especial] charge over you to accompany and defend and preserve you in all your ways [of obedience and service]," are often invoked during the service. Though usually held in a Catholic church, the events are generally considered to be ecumenical or non-denominational.
The Blue Mass dates to September 29, 1934, when Rev. Thomas Dade started the service as part of his duties with the Catholic Police and Fireman’s Society. The first mass was held at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Washington, D.C. and has grown to a nationwide celebration. The September 29 service was timed to coincide with Michaelmas, the feast of Saint Michael the Archangel, the patron military saint of police officers and military.
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- Wuerl, Donald (2014-05-14). "With Prayers and Gratitude: The Blue Mass". Cardinal's Blog. Archdiocese of Washington. Retrieved 26 December 2014.
- Long, Carolyn K. (2011-08-05). "What is a Blue Mass?". Angels Over America. Retrieved 26 December 2014.
- "20th Annual Blue Mass". St. Patrick Catholic Church. 2014-05-06. Retrieved 26 December 2014.
- "Showing gratitude for those who serve". Saint David of Wales Catholic parish. 2014-09-22. Retrieved 26 December 2014.
- "Blue Mass Honors Fallen Police and Firefighters". Colton City News. City News Group Inc. 2014-10-24. Retrieved 26 December 2014.
- "Msgr. Thomas B. Dade, was pastor in Riverdale". Baltimore Sun. 1994-11-17. Retrieved 26 December 2014.
- "LOCAL PARISH HAS "BLUE MASS" TO HONOR AND PRAY FOR FIRST RESPONDERS: POLICE, FIRE AND MEDICAL". Saint David of Wales Catholic parish. 2014-09-01. Retrieved 26 December 2014.
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