With a stairwell for a confessional and a folding table for an altar, the lobby of the DCU Center arena doesn’t look especially holy—until a band of circus workers gathers for Mass.

That’s when the Rev. Jerry Hogan dons a colorful chasuble festooned with images of big tops, lions and zebras. As he administers the Eucharist, off-duty performers help sanctify the space by kneeling on the marble floor, praying and breaking spontaneously into Portuguese song.

The event is no act, even if it is associated with a three-ring circus.

After months of living together on a train and performing hundreds of shows a year, these 50 Catholic circus workers and their children are a beaming bunch as they hug the priest and nuns who’ve prepared them for this day.

“This gives me a way to know Jesus and to be protected,” said trapeze artist Ingrid Silva as she prepared for the sacrament of confirmation.

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