Cardinal Egan is Red Mass homilist
Cardinal Edward Egan, the former Archbishop of New York, will be the homilist at the Red Mass, the traditional liturgy for members of the legal profession, Oct. 3 at 9:30 a.m. at St. Louis Cathedral.
The Mass will be followed by a memorial service and a reception at the Louisiana State Supreme Court, honoring all members of the bench and bar who died in the preceding year.
The Red Mass is attended by members of the legal profession of all denominations. Archbishop Gregory M. Aymond will be the principal celebrant. Music will be provided by the Loyola University Chorale. The ecclesiastical and judicial procession into the cathedral will begin at 9:15 a.m.
The tradition of the Red Mass dates back many centuries to Rome, Paris and London.
In the U.S., the tradition of the Red Mass was inaugurated in 1929 in New York by the Guild of Catholic Lawyers and is now celebrated on the first Monday in October in California, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Georgia and the District of Columbia.
In Washington, D.C., it is attended by the Justices of the Supreme Court, persons of all faiths and from all branches of government as well as foreign diplomats and other distinguished guests.
In New Orleans the first Red Mass was held on Oct. 5, 1953 and has been celebrated in New Orleans every year since with the exception of 2005, when the Red Mass, a Mass of Thanksgiving, was held in December 2005 in Baton Rouge.