The Mass attracted men, women, and children of all ages. Rather appropriately, the noise of babies echoed throughout the 90-minute liturgy. The presence of at least nine red or scarlet skull caps indicated attendance by “more … bishops than a Notre Dame football game,” joked Cardinal Dolan.
Five of the Sisters of Life from the mission in Toronto, Canada, drove down for the event. A whole block of pews was filled by the Sisters of Life in their dark blue and white habits, and men and women from many other orders mingled throughout the congregation, including the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal in their distinctive gray, hooded habits.
One man, who had attended the Mass for the institution of the order 25 years ago in St. Patrick’s Cathedral, was here again for their 25th anniversary. “I can’t believe how fast the time has gone!” he exclaimed.
The Mass was accompanied by exquisite music, thanks to the choir of the Sisters of Life, joined by several guest singers including men, women, and children. They sang Franz Schubert’s German Mass and several pieces of a cappella polyphony by master composers Tomas Luis de Victoria and Ludovico de Viadana.