White Mass for health care professionals set for Feb.10 in Lewiston

Posted Jan. 10, 2013, at 12:39 p.m.

LEWISTON — The annual White Mass for health care professionals and caregivers will be held at 10 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 10, at the Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul, 27 Bartlett St.

The White Mass celebrates health care professionals, including doctors, nurses, emergency medical technicians, lab technicians, therapists and others from all religious denominations, by offering a blessing for their contributions to the healing mission of Jesus, and to ask God’s blessing upon their work, according to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland.

“Those of us who entered into the medical profession do so because we desire to heal,” Dr. Michael Czerkes, who specializes in obstetrics and gynecology at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center in Lewiston, said in a press release issued by the diocese. “We want to help those around us, and we do that through medicine.

“Blessed Teresa of Calcutta rightly pointed out that we can only

cure physical disease and ailments through medicine,” he continued. “Spiritual ailments, like despair or hopelessness, can only be cured with love. I want to encourage all of us in the medical profession to join in the celebration of the White Mass. Let us join together to celebrate this sacrament of love, receive love, and then take that love back to our patients.”

“The White Mass is scheduled to coincide with the World Day of Prayer for the Sick on Feb. 11. Since 1992, the Catholic Church has celebrated World Day of Prayer for the Sick to remind the faithful to pray intensely for the sick, reflect on and respond to human suffering, and to recognize and honor all persons who work in health care and serve as caregivers,” according to the diocese’s website.

The White Mass is named for the color of the vestments worn on the day. White is associated with the medical profession.

For further information, contact Dave Guthro, communications director at the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, at 321-7810.

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