Msgr Jamie Gigantiello
Pastor at Saint Bernard R.C. Parish - Brooklyn, NY
Allow me to provide some clarification as it pertains to what is being called the “Star Wars Mass”.
At the parish of St. Bernard, we celebrate the Family Mass every Sunday at 11:30AM. At this liturgy, the children of the parish are invited to processes in with the priest and sit in the sanctuary until the conclusion of the Homily, at which point they return to their parents in the pews for the Liturgy of the Eucharist. At the Family Mass, different scenes taken from the popular culture and the daily experience of the children are used to assist the celebrant relay the message of that week’s Gospel to the children. The Family Mass is occasionally followed with, upon the conclusion of Mass, a social for the families held in the school auditorium or in the parish garden. Examples of such Family Masses include All Saints Day when the children dress in the costume of their favorite saint, Pumpkin Patch Sunday, Ice Cream Sunday Sunday, the Backpack Blessing Sunday which is held the week school begins, Monthly Class Mass, and other which are held for our children and families throughout the year.
In the instance of Star Wars, this is a very popular film series among children and their parents. The intention of this Mass is to be a way to enhance the children’s understanding of the difference between good and evil and the ultimate triumph of good over evil. The children were invited to dress in costumes of characters from Star Wars and participate in the same way they normally do at each Family Mass. Upon the conclusion of the Mass, refreshments will be provided for the families in the school auditorium, along with appearances by some of the characters from the movie in the auditorium.
At St. Bernard Parish, we are always looking for ways to engage our young people and instruct them in the ways of our Catholic faith and tradition.