Detroit Mercy Law hosts 108th Annual Red Mass

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Pictured (l-r) are Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Michael J. Riordan; Fr. Gary Wright, Pastor Ss. Peter and Paul Jesuit Church; University of Detroit Mercy Law Dean Phyllis L. Crocker; and Oakland County Circuit Court Judge Denise Langford Morris.

University of Detroit Mercy School of Law hosted the 108th Annual Red Mass on September 22, 2020, at Ss. Peter and Paul Jesuit Church. Due to COVID-19 safety precautions, the Mass was live streamed to Facebook. The Red Mass video was viewed over 800 times within the first day with viewers from all over the world, including one alumnus who now lives in Taiwan.

Red Mass is an occasion for judges, attorneys, civic leaders, and law students of all faiths to come together at the beginning of the new judicial term and pray for blessings and strength in the coming year’s work. Detroit Mercy Law’s annual Red Mass dates back to 1877, when Detroit College, as the University was then known, began its first year with a Mass at Ss. Peter and Paul Jesuit Church. The School of Law continued the tradition when it opened in 1912, again hosting the Red Mass on behalf of the Archdiocese of Detroit at Ss. Peter and Paul through the present. This Red Mass is the longest consecutively running Red Mass in the country and this year’s Mass was the first ever live streamed Red Mass.

Fr. Gary Wright, pastor at Ss. Peter and Paul Jesuit Church, was the celebrant of the Mass this year. Oakland County Circuit Court Judge Denise Langford Morris ’82 led the Renewal of the Lawyers’ Oath of Commitment.

Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Michael J. Riordan ’90 read the Penitential Rite, Catherine Punsalan-Manlimos, Assistant to the President for Mission Integration at University of Detroit Mercy, read the first reading, and Jewel Haji ’19, Associate at Honigman, read the intersessions.



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