Red Mass Celebration 2012

The Catholic Lawyers' Society Kuala Lumpur celebrated its 18th Annual Votive Mass of the Holy Spirit on 7 January 2012 at the Church of St. Thomas More, USJ Subang Jaya (STM).

The Mass, popularly known as the Red Mass was presided by His Grace, Rt. Rev. Cornelius Sim, DD, Apostolic Vicar, Brunei (Bishop of Brunei).

Con-celebrants were His Grace Archbishop Murphy Pakiam, Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur, Rev. Fr. Jestus Pereira, the Society’s Ecclesiastical Assistant and Rev. Fr. Simon Labrooy, parish priest of STM.

As in the past and following a tradition going back over more than 700 years, the celebrants and altar servers were dressed in bright red vestments representing tongues of fire while judges and lawyers were dressed in their black court robes representing their coming together as a Catholic legal community in offering their services to God and seeking God's guidance in their chosen profession.

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Procession into church1
For Catholic lawyers, loving the law and observing the law is not sufficient. They must go into the spirit of the law and render services beyond the call of duty.

In this respect, Bishop Cornelius in his sermon invited all to emulate the three traits of Mary derived from the Gospel reading taken from John 2: 1-11 (Wedding at Cana). These 3 traits which he identified from this Gospel passage are as follows:

  1. Mary was sensitive to the needs of others.
  2. Mary turned to Jesus and presented the needs of the couple to him.
  3. Mary did not present any solution to Jesus, but left it entirely to him.

Bishop Cornelius explains that we must have the ability to read the signs of the times and endeavour to intervene appropriately. Because of our limitations, Bishop Cornelius advises that we must always turn to the Lord in any situation and be ready to submit to him with all humility, as Mary did. This, Bishop Cornelius emphasizes means that we “must be ready to go down the road the Lord wants us to travel even when he chooses to work in a different way”.

Archbishop Murphy Pakiam in his address invited all to emulate the prayfullness of Sir Dato’ Peter Mooney, the society’s advisor. His Grace invited us to pray the divine office. He suggested we could read the psalms when we are traveling to work or stuck at traffic jams etc.... He also thanked the Catholic Lawyers for assisting in various legal matters, including the Herald case, conversion matters, church land matters and others.

In keeping with the traditions of the Red Mass, we should always devote our practical love for the profession we practice by praising God in the Red Mass as well as following the teachings of the Church.

See you all at the next Red Mass 2013.

God bless you.

Joachim Lim
Catholic Lawyers’ Society, Kuala Lumpur.

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