On February 2nd, the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord, Cardinal Vincent invited religious and consecrated men and woman to Mass at Westminster Cathedral to celebrate World Day of Consecrated Life, to pray for and honour the work that is done in service of the Church by those who have consecrated their life to God.
As is customary on this feast, Mass began with a procession of candles as both celebrants and congregation held aloft lit candles.
In his homily the Cardinal reflected on the symbolism of the lighthouse, with the light at the centre representing Christ at the centre of the Church: ‘It is through Christ that we can come to see the face of the Father; it is in Christ that we seek to live; it is with Christ that we walk, each day of our lives.’
Like the mirrors that reflect the light, the purpose of the Church is to reflect the light of Christ: ‘When our faces are turned towards him, then we may just reflect his light more fully, despite the faults that mark us and distort his light,’ explained the Cardinal.
Noting that the placement of a lighthouse is critical, the Cardinal said that, likewise, in the Church, ‘it is so often Religious sisters and brothers who have the gift of knowing where that is. You often know the rocky places on which you must make your presence visible.’
He thanked the men and women Religious for all that they do, noting in particular, their role in fighting human trafficking in the UK.
He invited them renew their commitment to consecrated life and in particular to prayer: ‘let us commit ourselves afresh to conform our lives, through prayer, to the “compassionate and trustworthy” Christ’.
All pictures from the Mass can be viewed here.