Published on March 19th, 2021 | by University Communications


Saint Leo community invited to join in Palm Sunday, Easter celebrations of Mass

The Saint Leo community is invited to Holy Week observances at University Campus. Holy Week begins with Palm Sunday—also known as Passion Sunday—which is March 28 this year.

Palm Sunday commemorates Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem, when the crowd waved palm branches.

University Ministry will begin the Palm Sunday Mass at 7 p.m., Sunday, March 28, at Saint Jude Chapel at the Student Activities Building with the blessing of palm branches. Then there will be a procession to the Abbey Church for Mass, celebrated by Father Randall Meissen, university chaplain. It also will be livestreamed via Facebook Live on University Ministry’s Facebook page.

Easter Mass will be celebrated at 7 p.m., Sunday, April 4, at the Abbey Church with Father Randall and University Ministry team members. This Mass also will be livestreamed on the Facebook page.

In addition, two Saint Leo students, Alexa Keeler and Nora Ewer, will be welcomed into the Catholic Church during the Easter vigil Mass at 8 p.m., Saturday, March 27, at St. Anthony Catholic Church in nearby San Antonio. They will receive the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, and first holy Communion.

For information about University Ministry, call (352) 588-8331 or email

Benedictine Monks of Saint Leo Abbey

In addition, all are invited to join the Benedictine Monks of Saint Leo Abbey in the observance of Holy Week at the Abbey Church.

Holy Thursday, April 1, Mass of the Lord’s Supper, 7 p.m.

Good Friday, April 2, liturgy of the Passion, 3 p.m.  (Note: University offices are closed and there are no classes)

Holy Saturday, April 3, the Easter vigil Mass, 8:30 p.m.

Easter Sunday, April 4, Mass of the Resurrection, 7 p.m. (Student Mass, celebrated by Father Randall)

There will be no noon Masses from Thursday through Friday, nor will there be evening prayer on those days or eucharistic adoration on Friday afternoon.

There will not be a 10 a.m. Mass on Easter Sunday as the monks will celebrate the Paschal vigil the night before. 

 All guests should wear masks and observe social distancing in the Abbey Church. The Masses will be livestreamed via the Abbey’s YouTube and Facebook channels.

Diocese of St. Petersburg

As is the custom of the Diocese of St. Petersburg, the chrism Mass (Mass of the holy oils) is celebrated on the Tuesday of Holy Week at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle in St. Petersburg, FL. This year, it will be at 11:30 a.m., Tuesday, March 30.

Due to the coronavirus capacity limitations for the cathedral, those invited to attend the chrism Mass will be limited to the priests and deacons of the diocese. The chrism Mass will not be open to the public; however, it will be livestreamed on the diocesan website, Facebook page, and YouTube channel as well as broadcast on WBVM-FM, Spirit FM, 90.5.

During the Chrism Mass, Bishop Gregory Parkes, a member of the Saint Leo University Board of Trustees, will gather with the priests of the diocese for the blessing of the oil of catechumens, the oil of the sick, and the consecration of the sacred chrism. The priests also will renew their promises to priestly ministry before the bishop at this liturgy.

The three oils will then be used throughout the next year 2021-2022 for the celebration of sacraments. The oil of the sick is used for the anointing of the sick and the dying. The oil of catechumens is used to anoint those welcomed into the order of catechumens prior to baptism. The sacred chrism is used in the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, the ordination of priests and bishops, and in the dedication of a church and altar.

Holy Week Masses also will be livestreamed and broadcast by the diocese on Facebook, YouTube, and Spirit FM. The schedule is:

Holy Thursday, April 1, 7 p.m., Mass of the Lord’s supper;

Good Friday, April 2, 3 p.m., Passion of the Lord; and,

Holy Saturday, April 3, 8 p.m., Easter vigil.

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