April 21, 2019  |  By:   |  Press Releases  |  

More than 10,000 people attended Easter Masses at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in downtown Los Angeles, uniting in prayer for all affected by the bombings in Sri Lanka and to welcome new Catholics who received the Sacraments of Initiation during Saturday night’s Easter Vigil.

“The Church is God’s beautiful family and our Father gives each one of us a purpose, a duty, a part to play that no one else can play in his great story of salvation,” said Archbishop José H. Gomez. “My brothers and sisters, it is a beautiful thing to know the living God! Let us resolve again to walk with Jesus in friendship and in love, and every day let us share his love and tell others about him. This is our mission, just like the Apostles who became witnesses of the Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ!” Full homilies from Easter Vigil (English) and Easter Sunday (Spanish) are attached.  

The Archdiocese of Los Angeles welcomed 1,560 new Catholics during Easter Vigil. They received the Sacraments of Initiation at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels or at their respective parishes in Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties.

While people can become Catholic at any time of the year, the Easter Vigil is a particularly appropriate moment for adult catechumens to be baptized and for already-baptized Christians to be received into full communion with the Catholic Church.

Faithful at all Masses at the Cathedral today prayed for those affected by the attacks in Sri Lanka. The Archbishop issued a statement earlier today saying: “We are praying for our brothers and sisters who were killed this Easter morning in Sri Lanka. May they know the promise of the Resurrection and may God bring comfort to their families and their loved ones. Only love can conquer evil and violence, so we ask Jesus this morning for the courage to love and we pray for the conversion of every heart that is hardened by hatred. May the Blessed Virgin Mary, who is our mother and the mother of mercy, console those who are suffering and watch over all of us. And may God grant us peace.”

During Easter Mass, after renewing their baptismal promises, all faithful received a blessing with Easter holy water as a reminder that, in and through Christ, they have died and been born again through the waters of baptism.

The feast of the Resurrection of Christ is the oldest and most important Christian celebration. Christians believe that, by rising from the dead, Jesus demonstrated his power over sin and death, manifesting his divinity as the Son of God. According to the Christian Scriptures, Jesus is the long-awaited Messiah who offered his life for the sins of the world as was prophesied in the Hebrew Scriptures.

Videos of Easter and Holy Week Masses and services are available at  

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