Thursday, 24th May 2018

Roman Station Masses for Lent

Posted on 22. Feb, 2018 in Carousel

Walking up the Via Merulana towards the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore

Waiting for the Basilica to be opened (6:50am)!

For the season of Lent, in preparation to renew our baptismal promises at Easter, many of us give something up. The traditional tasks of Lent: prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, are at the core of our Christian practices. And, there is the tradition now of taking up something for Lent.

An example of taking something up is the ancient tradition of making a pilgrimage to a different Church each day during Lent to celebrate Mass. The community here at the Irish College take up this practice of the Roman Station Masses. They take place every day during Lent at a different Church in the city. As a community we commit to at least one of these Masses each week.We also take responsibility for serving two of the Masses each year.

On Wednesday morning 21st February 2018, we made our way to Santa Maria Maggiore, one of the four major Papal Basilicas here in Rome known fondly in English as “Mary Majors”, for 7am Mass. This is the Basilica that Pope Francis visits before and after every apostolic visit that he makes. In this Basilica of Our Lady we find a relic of the manger of Jesus in a reliquary enshrined below the Altar.

Further information on the Roman Station Masses can be found at: https://www.pnac.org/station-churches/the-roman-station-liturgy/ . We are very grateful to the community at the Pontifical North American College for all that they do each year to facilitate this beautiful pilgrimage tradition.