Cardinal Donald Wuerl, archbishop of Washington, on Sunday celebrated the archdiocese’s fourth annual White Mass, which honors the gifts of all persons with disabilities and those with mental health challenges.
In his homily, Cardinal Wuerl discussed how each individual is a unique reflection of the majesty of God and how God rejoices in all of his creation.
“Each one of us in our own individuality, in our own uniqueness, not only manifests the glory of God, but because we are who we are, we actually bless and praise the Lord. All of us are highly prized, uniquely made individuals. God sees each of us but he also sees us together as the masterpiece of his creation reflecting his glory,” said Cardinal Wuerl. “Just as all of us are created by God as we are and all of us have a place at the table of the Lord through baptism, so those with special needs bring their own particular gifts to the Church and to our celebration today. Before God, we are all children, before God, we all lay claim to his love in that divine Spirit within us that we received in baptism and that manifests itself in so many diverse, challenging and yet real ways.”
Cardinal Wuerl continued, “Pope Francis, who has captured the imaginations and hearts of people all around the world, tells us the message is very simple. God loves each of us. We must embrace one another in that love and see in each other, not only the love of God but the image – the face – of God.”
The White Mass brought national, regional and local leaders together in prayer with those who have special needs and their caregivers.
The Archdiocese of Washington’s Department of Special Needs Ministries hosts this annual liturgy.