Sunday, 10 November 2013
Why Come To Holy Mass?
Father has placed this notice in the extended Bulletin he is preparing piece by piece for Christmas. I thought it might be useful for parents to print off for their pre-teen children who might ask, “Why should we come to Mass? Is it really important and does it do us any good?”. I hope you find it useful.
When we are at Mass we hear God speaking to us in the readings, and meet Him in His Mystical Body, His people.
When we are at Mass we are truly standing with Our Lady at the foot of the Cross as Our Blessed Lord, Jesus Christ, offers the Sacrifice of His life for our Salvation: “This is My Body, given up for you...This is My Blood, which is shed for you....” (Matt 26v26-28).
When we are at Mass we are present at the tomb of the Resurrection, because Our Crucified and Risen Lord is Truly Present in the Blessed Sacrament: “I am the Living Bread come down from heaven. He who eats My Flesh and drinks My Blood lives in Me, and I in Him...whoever eats Me will draw life from Me” (John 6v51-57). It is because He is truly Present in the Blessed Sacrament that in accord with scripture, which says “every knee shall bow before Him” (Rom.14v11; Phil.2v10); and which calls “let us kneel before the God who made us” (Ps.95v6) that we receive Holy Communion kneeling. Pagans refused to kneel because they saw it as beneath them; we kneel to show we are willing to humble ourselves before God.
When we are at Mass we are literally in heaven, because wherever God is, heaven is, and Jesus our Lord and God is Truly Present in the Blessed Sacrament, surrounded by His angels and saints -thus it is “with all the angels and saints we sing Holy, Holy, Holy (Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus” Rev.4v8). Indeed, the reason we have statues of angels and saints in Church is to remind us that when we step into a Catholic Church for Mass we step into heaven. Truly, we don’t need to die to go to heaven; we only need to come to Mass! In fact we come to Mass to show God we want to go to heaven, which is why missing Mass is a grave sin and why we cannot receive Holy Communion again if we miss Mass until we have been to Confession. We value Mass and never omit to come to Mass not because the Church commands us to come, but because by choosing to come to Mass we are choosing to come to heaven, and by choosing not to come to Mass we are choosing not to come to heaven...and who wants to miss out on heaven?
Is there a way of being sure we will go to heaven when we die? Yes, there is; we can know that if we are good enough to go to Holy Communion we are good enough to go to heaven, because Holy Mass and Holy Communion are heaven on earth. Does that mean those who cannot receive Holy Communion cannot go to heaven? No; but it does mean their salvation is in jeopardy, since they are excluded from receiving the Holy Eucharist, the source of all grace. And being in a state of grace is the one guarantee of going to heaven. Those who cannot receive Holy Communion should still come to Mass so as to enact their desire to come to heaven.