Cathedral hosts Red Mass for those in legal profession, civil service

Jaron Bromm, an attorney for Caterpillar Inc., proclaims the second reading at the Diocesan Red Mass on Oct. 15 at St. Mary's Cathedral in Peoria. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

Red is the color traditionally associated with the Holy Spirit and the Spirit’s guidance for civil servants, elected leaders and public officials, especially those in the legal profession, was sought more than once at the Diocesan Red Mass last Sunday. Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, was the celebrant for the annual liturgy at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Peoria.

That guidance was welcomed by Jaron Bromm, an attorney for Caterpillar Inc., who proclaimed the second reading at the Mass.

“I wanted to participate in the Red Mass and do that as a family because it’s important to us to support the church and to be who we’re called to be in this country and this world,” said Bromm, whose wife, Michelle, and daughter, Anna, served as gift bearers. The Bromms belong to St. Mary Parish in Metamora.

“I think the Red Mass is a great opportunity for that witness of truth and goodness and beauty through the practice of law and our government, that we’re here to serve others and those around us who are in need,” he told The Catholic Post.

Bromm said he also appreciated the cathedral’s St. Thomas More Chapel, with its stained glass windows of St. Thomas More, patron saint of lawyers, civil servants, politicians and public servants, and St. John Fisher, his contemporary. Both refused to support Henry VIII’s divorce from Catherine of Aragon or acknowledge the king as the supreme head of the Church of England and were beheaded.

They are “examples for us of what kind of servants of the people we’re supposed to be in this profession,” Bromm said.


In his homily, Bishop Jenky encouraged his listeners to heed the “table fellowship” of Jesus, with its “surprising categories of people.” This was characteristic of the Lord’s public life, he said.

During his homily at the annual Red Mass, celebrated Oct. 15 at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Peoria, Bishop Jenky referred to God not as a judge waiting to pass judgment, but as a loving parent who will supply whatever we need. That includes the Blessed Sacrament, “the Church’s greatest treasure, the essence and power of the Church’s very existence.” (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

“The rich and the poor, those who are healthy and those who are lame, both neighbors and strangers, are all called to come to the banquet as equals, as honored guests, as God’s chose ones,” he said, noting that the Blessed Sacrament is the church’s greatest treasure.

“The Mass is an endless fountain of sanctifying grace, the source of all Christian service, and the summit of all Catholic life and practice,” Bishop Jenky said.

In addition to elected officials, the prayers of the faithful included a petition for lawmakers, lawyers and judges, “that they may enact and defend laws that protect the rights of all persons, especially those most vulnerable — the unborn, the poor, the sick, and the aged.” Also remembered in prayer were police, firefighters, EMTs, and military personnel, “that they may know the gratitude of the people they serve and the protection and support of all the angels and saints.”

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