Each year in October, around the feast day of St. Luke, patron of the medical profession the White Mass is celebrated in Los Angeles cathedral. So called because many participants wear the white coats associated with their profession. This Mass prays for Catholic doctors, nurses and all involved in healthcare. It follows a tradition which began in the US in the 1800s.
“The White Mass warms our hearts as we thank God for the presence among us of our dedicated and committed health care professionals, doctors, nurses, physical therapists, lab technicians, hospice workers and all who continue the healing ministry of Jesus,” said Sister Angela Hallahan, Director of Health Affairs for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. “It is they who enflesh the message of Pope Francis: ‘in ministry we must accompany people and we must heal their wounds’.”
At the conclusion of the Mass, awards are presented for different categories of service. This year, Dr. Gina Lawson received the 2016 National Doctors’ of the Year Award for her outstanding ministry as Director of Nurses in the five St Luke Northland hospitals in Kansas City.
In honouring these members of the medical profession, we think with gratitude of the medicos who put their own lives at risk in rescue operations, in humanitarian causes, and in the too many war-zones of the world. May peace and safety accompany them.