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THE BLUE MASS on March 1, 2011

By Deacon Steve Rangel, Director, Pastoral Outreach

    The 4th Annual Blue Mass for the Archdiocese of Santa Fe was held at St. Pius X gymnasium at noon on March 1, 2001. The Blue Mass was originally started at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Washington, DC in 1934 by a Catholic Priest names Thomas Dade from the Baltimore, Maryland Archdiocese. He initiated the Catholic Police and Firemen’s Society and invited hundreds of officers to process into the Mass in their blue uniforms, thus calling it the Blue Mass.

    The Blue Mass started in Albuquerque in 2008 at Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish downtown as a celebration of faith honoring the dedication of law enforcement and fire-rescue personnel in our community. For the first two years there were 50 officers and guest who attended the Blue Mass. The in 2010, it was moved to St. Pius X gymnasium and it was expanded to include all first responders such as military and correction officers, as well and 450 officers, family members and guests were in attendance. The Blue Mass including Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry, Rio Rancho Mayor Thomas Swisstack, Secretary of Corrections, Lupe Martinez, and other dignitaries. There were representatives from the United States Army & Air Force, Albuquerque’s Fire, Police and K-9 Unit, Bernalillo County’s EMT, Fire, and Sheriff’s Department, KAFB Honor Guard and National Guardsmen, Los Lunas Police Department, Sandoval County Fire Department, Santa Fe’s Fire, Police and Sheriff’s Department, the Blue Star Mothers (who have children currently serving in the military) as well as the Gold Star Mothers (who have lost children in the service of our country).

    The Blue Mass is something very dear to Archbishop Michael J. Sheehan who wants to let the first responders know that as a community, we owe them out gratitude for their willingness to serve and protect us. They put on their uniforms and step out their doors in the performance of their duties. That is why the Archbishop makes it a point to have a special Blue Mass for the first responders and their families, so we never forget to honor the men and women who have served and continue to serve our communities throughout New Mexico and our nation. If you are interested or wanting to help, please contact the Pastoral outreach Office at 505-831-8174.

People of God newsletter, March 2011 edition