Missoula parish focuses on community sacrifice on Good Friday


MISSOULA, Mont. - Catholics around the world celebrated Good Friday, in preparation for Easter.

At Saint Anthony Parish in Missoula, Father Gary Reller's message was focused on sacrifice.

"The great sacrifice Jesus made for us dying on the cross," Reller.

But Reller said it's about sacrifice for each other as well.

"If we are all called to be a sacrificial people, if we're going to be his disciples, we need to be a people who follow his example and be willing to sacrifice for one another," Reller said.

Members of the church were asked to take that seriously during a special ceremony.

"It's the Veneration of the Cross, where people come up and touch the cross or kiss the cross, just as a sign that they appreciate the sacrifice that Jesus made and that they're willing to participate in sharing that cross of Christ."

But Good Friday isn't the only time for this sort of dedication. Reller said the message of sacrifice extends beyond the church and can be applied in the community.

"We have a lot of social service programs in our community -- food banks, Family Promise, the Poverello Center -- just a myriad of things that we can do to really reach out and serve the needs of other people."