Emergency Responders to be Honored at Second Annual Blue Mass on Sunday

September 9, 2016
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Gabe Jones
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Mass to honor living and deceased emergency responders on 15th anniversary of 9/11

What: Second Annual Blue Mass to honor emergency responders
Where: Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis (4431 Lindell)
When: Sunday, September 11, 2016, 10:00 a.m.
Who: Archbishop Robert Carlson and emergency responders from the greater St. Louis region

ST. LOUIS – Most Reverend Robert J. Carlson, Archbishop of St. Louis, will honor all emergency responders by celebrating the second annual Blue Mass in the Archdiocese of St. Louis on Sunday, September 11, 2016, the 15th anniversary of the terrorist attacks of 9/11. Police officers, firefighters, paramedics, emergency support staff, and other public safety and law enforcement personnel and their families are invited.

“The work of our emergency responders is a gift that requires much sacrifice,” Archbishop Robert J. Carlson said. “In a time when tensions are high and recent tragic killings of police officers are fresh in our minds, this Mass is one way for the Archdiocese of St. Louis to show support for what these men and women do every day. In a particular way we want to say ‘thank you’ to those who dedicate their lives to serve and protect the citizens of the greater St. Louis region, especially on the 15th anniversary of the September 11th attacks. In living out their profession, these men and women show us the true spirit of what it means to be a follower of Christ.”

Every September 11th anniversary offers an opportunity to pause and reflect upon the bravery of the first responders who rushed into the burning World Trade Center buildings and the Pentagon, risking their own lives to help others. Fifteen years later many children have grown up without their mother or father, but knowing that they died bravely in the line of duty. The spirit of sacrifice embodied by those first responders on that hallowed day, as well as the heroes aboard Flight 93, should inspire us all.

The Blue Mass honors men and women currently serving as emergency responders, as well as all those who have died in the line of duty. The Mass is intended to bring a greater awareness of those who serve us so faithfully, often placing others’ lives and safety above their own.

The first Blue Mass was celebrated by Fr. Thomas Dade on September 29, 1934, at St. Patrick Church in Washington, D.C. In attendance were more than 1,000 police and firemen, dressed in their blue uniforms. The tradition of showing gratitude to emergency responders and their families in this way has continued throughout the United States, especially since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.