Two special Masses will be celebrated in Toledo in the next week, one to honor local firefighters and the other to pray for members of the legal community.
In addition, a prayer service will be held on Friday for the four men being ordained as deacons.
The Mass of Thanksgiving for firefighters will be held at 10 a.m. tomorrow at the Historic Church of St. Patrick, 130 Avondale Ave. in downtown Toledo. The church is also being designated as the diocese s Firefighter s Parish, with daily prayers offered for those in fire safety professions. A statue of St. Florian, patron saint of firefighters, will be blessed at St. Pat s Historic.
All firefighters, active and retired, and their family and friends of all religious traditions are invited to attend tomorrow s Mass of Thanksgiving.
On Thursday, prayers for judges, lawyers, prosecutors, paralegals, law clerks, and other members of the local legal community will be held in a Red Mass at Rosary Cathedral, with Bishop Leonard Blair presiding.
Friday s Evening Prayer with Solemn Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament will offer prayers for the deacons who will be ordained Sept. 20 at the cathedral. The Rev. Charles Singler, director of the diocesan office of worship, will preside at the 7 p.m. service, which is being sponsored by the deacons of the Toledo diocese.
Judge Michael Goulding of Toledo Municipal Court, one of the organizers of the Red Mass, said all members of the local legal community, whatever their faith tradition may be, are invited to attend.
Last year about 300 people took part in the Red Mass and about 100 attended a banquet that followed, the judge said.
The Red Mass dates back to 13th century France and includes prayers for the Holy Spirit to provide guidance to those responsible for administering justice.
The clergy wear red vestments during the Mass to symbolize the Holy Spirit as described in the Book of Acts, Chapter 2, appearing as tongues of fire when descending on Jesus apostles.
Judge Goulding said Bishop Blair s homily at last year s Red Mass helped him focus on his responsibilities as a judge during a time when he was running for election to the Municipal Court post.
I was in the middle of a pretty tumultuous year myself with all the politics and junk that goes along with it, and that homily did bring me back to the ground level about what I was doing as a judge and in my profession as an attorney, he said.
The Mass will be followed by a banquet that will feature a talk by the Rev. David Link and the presentation of an award for outstanding service to the legal community.
Father Link, a native of Sandusky, Ohio, was the longtime dean of the University of Notre Dame Law School.
After the death of his wife from cancer, Father Link chose to pursue the priesthood and was ordained this year in the diocese of Gary, Ind., where he serves as a chaplain to the Indiana State Prison in Michigan City, Ind.
Judge James Carr, chief federal judge for Ohio s northern district, will be the recipient of this year s Jack Schlageter Award in recognition of his years of service to the local community.
The Red Mass will be begin at 6 p.m. Thursdayat Rosary Cathedral, 2535 Collingwood Blvd., preceded by the Sacrament of Confession at 5:15 p.m.
A dinner will follow in the Msgr. Bernard Smith Hall at Rosary Cathedral Parish. Dinner reservations are $35 per person by calling Thomas Dillon, 419-321-1339.