October 26, 2010

What's the Rush:Mass?

Yesterday, I blogged about hurrying thru prayer. Today, I want to blog about hurrying thru Mass.

The Crucifixion and Death of Jesus took several hours. The Resurrection took a few days. Time is meaningless to God. But, it isn’t to us. The time taken for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass should be savored. It should not be viewed as a chore, as something to endure, as something keeping me from the big game or doing what I really want to do. We should treasure the moment. It is a fine memory. Be in the moment.

However, too many people feel like going to Mass every Sunday is too much to ask. There are those few who do condescend to show up. They show up in their game day jerseys just before the Gospel and they leave right after Communion. They feel justified. They were there. They think they fulfilled the Sunday obligation just by being there. Don’t get me wrong-attendence is mandatory but you can be there and not be there-know what I’m sayin’?

I’m by no means suggesting if your heart is not in it stay home. But, some days I wonder if I do mean to say that. If you are not committed, why bother? Is it because of the kids? Trust me. The kids pick up on your sense of feeling tortured every Sunday.

I don’t know what the answer is. Perhaps prayer for a deeper engagement in the Mystery? Perhaps constant prayer, internally, during Mass until you feel engaged. Perhaps, studying what the meaning is behind the priest’s actions and words would help?

I want, also, to mention that priest’s who offer the “express” Mass do not help deepen the sense of the sacredness of Holy Mass by rushing thru it for the supposed benefit of the faithful who probably need to be somewhere else. At what time, really, do we NOT feel like we need to be someplace else? Mass should be the someplace we’d rather be.


Blogger Kelly said...

Wow, when I read your description of the "express mass" I had to laugh. We have had a priest or two-especially for the daily masses-who do what I like to call the Readers Digest mass. They talk through our responses, and often I am struggling to mentally keep pace as they rattle through.
But I am also guilty of (mentally, I hope!) rolling my eyes and sighing when our elderly monsignor draws out things like, "have mercy" --(drive a truck through--here)---"on us all"---

It is just nice to attend a mass done with reverence, but not manufactured, theatrical poignancy, which I am grateful to say we do have in a wonderful young priest new to our parish. I was stopped by a fellow parishioner in the supermarket who remarked that Father's homily went "on and on" (it deviated from the strict 5-7 min). I laughed and said,"oh I could listen to him all day". lol All I got was an "oh!"
Anyways, your points about mass and prayer are right on.
God Bless you,
Kelly @ A mom for life-the unconventional family

October 26, 2010 8:53 AM  
Blogger nazareth priest said...

Eucharistic adoration is the "antidote" for both priests and the faithful in order to be drawn more deeply into the Eucharistic mystery celebrated upon the Altar.
Only silent prayer before our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament can prepare one for a fruitful self-giving at Holy Mass...and Eucharistic adoration is also a thanksgiving for the gift of the Son, Who empties Himself completely in His Sacrifice.
Not my ideas; they're from our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI.

October 26, 2010 10:45 AM  
Blogger Angela M. said...

Great post! I should copy it and send it to all my kids!

October 26, 2010 11:02 AM  
Blogger Subvet said...

"...and they leave right after Communion."

THAT particular "Catholic" tradition really fired up my Methodist wife the first time she attended Mass with me. She was positively seething at the disrespect shown to both the priest and God.

She converted about a year and a half ago, still gets peeved about those who rocket out of the church ASAP after receiving Communion.

And don't even ask her about homilies that devolve into a push for money.

October 26, 2010 4:53 PM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

I've never, ever left after communion but when I was a teenager the first thing I did was check the length of the epistle and gospel before Mass to see how long it was.

And don't even mention showing up to find 6 blazing candles on the altar. Oooooops! Wrong Mass.

October 26, 2010 10:39 PM  

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