Church honors local judges

Published 05/02 2014 12:29PM

Updated 05/02 2014 12:31PM

The Red Mass

Since 1993, the Red Mass has been celebrated annually at Holy Trinity Catholic Church during the first week of May, in recognition of National Law Week. The Mass is attended by judges, lawyers, governmental officials, and persons of all faiths for the purpose of invoking God's blessing and guidance in the administration of justice.

The Red Mass has a rich history originating centuries ago in Rome, Paris, and London. Its traditional name is derived from the color of the vestments worn by the celebrants of the Mass. Over the centuries, the Red Mass has officially opened the judicial year of the Sacred Roman Rota, the Tribunal of the Holy See. During the reign of Louis IX, Saint Louis of France, La Sainte Chapelle was designated as the Chapel for the Mass and is now used only once a year solely for the Red Mass. In England, the tradition began in the Middle Ages and continued even during World War II when judges and lawyers attended the Red Mass annually at the Westminster Cathedral. The tradition was inaugurated in the United States in 1928 at old Saint Andrew's Church in New York City. Since then, the Red Mass has been celebrated annually there and in many cities in the United States.

In Shreveport, the Red Mass has been sponsored by the Red Mass Society of Shreveport. Founded in 1993, the Society is dedicated to works of charity and other community projects. The primary purpose of the Society is the enhancement of spiritual, intellectual, and social fellowship among its members.

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