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Holy Sacrifice or meal

Discussion in 'The Sacraments' started by Mary H, Jan 27, 2017.

  1. Mary H

    Mary H New Member

    A few years ago we had to have weekday Mass in our parish room. One lady said to me "I prefer it in here, it's more like a meal". I was unable to answer her - too appalled. I have heard others refer to the Eucharist as a "meal" and I'm sorry, I can't agree. The Host is Jesus Christ and I receive Him to fortify me and stay within me until I can come to him again. I see this as Communion with Him alone and believe we should remain in silence for a time at the end of Mass.

    Another point: one of our parishioners arrived at Mass last Sunday just before Communion. I heard her apologise to Father afterwards but she said "At least I was in time for Communion". I did not hear his reply, but knowing him and his unwillingness to rock the boat, I doubt if he said anything. When I was an Anglican I was taught that we must enter the church before the Gospel, if we were late. Since becoming a Catholic I have always tried to arrive half an hour before the Mass starts and allow this time to get there. If anything should prevent me on my way, I wouldn't go up to receive Communion. Am I right or am I being too scrupulous?
    AED, Clare A and sterph like this.
  2. padraig

    padraig New Member

    Wow Mary of course you have it right!!

    For me the Mass is the entire centre of my entire day.

    I am either walking towards it..

    ..or walking from it....

    either the mass is my entire life...

    not just the Eucharist but the entire big deal, for when I go to Mass I am entering the Eternal Sacrifice....I Am entering heaven itself the breaking of the word in scripture..and the breaking of the Bread of the New Convenant, the Eucharist,

    at the mass I enter heaven and I lie on the Cross
    AED, SgCatholic, Beth B and 1 other person like this.
  3. padraig

    padraig New Member

    What can I say?

    Its the Mass.

    My entire life revolves around it
    AED, Beth B and sterph like this.
  4. padraig

    padraig New Member

  5. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    Mary, I think Padraig has it right. It is everybody else who is not paying enough respect to this deeply mystical moment, not you who are paying too much attention to it.

    The one caveat I would mention though is if you have a problem with scruples you may want to be careful about putting too many additional personal restrictions on yourself over what the Church expects of you to receive The Lord. I only mention that because you questioned being too scrupulous. People who are too scrupulous need to work on being less strict about these things because they are already often more strict than the Church dictates we should be.

    By the way in regards to coming late to Mass or leaving early, a priest at my parish made an apt remark in this regard. He said something to the effect that Judas was the only one who didn't stay for the entire first Mass.
    Mary H and Beth B like this.
  6. padraig

    padraig New Member

    yes .


    either you are following Jesus..

    or you are not following Jesus

    you cannot......

    be following Jesus....

    ...or not following Jesus..

    at one and the same time...
  7. lynnfiat

    lynnfiat Fiat Voluntas Tua

    Our Blessed Mother told us in Medjugorje that we should arrive at least 15 minutes before Mass begins. Before coming into the Catholic Church, I attended a Mass where the Priest told the parishioners that they should not even enter the Church if they arrive after the Gospel. I'm sure there are situations where someone may not have been able to get there on time, but your heart tells you if you should enter the Church or not.
  8. Dolours

    Dolours Powers

    Unless the parishioner was in mortal sin, I can't think of any reason why she shouldn't have received Communion. She could have fulfilled her Sunday obligation at a vigil Mass not necessarily in that parish. There also could have been valid reasons for her being late for Mass which she may well have explained to the priest, so it is wrong to speculate on whether she should have received Communion.

    I share the sentiments about the re-presentation of the Eternal Sacrifice as a meal. Sadly, I fear that's becoming quite prevalent, even among our priests.
    Jeanne likes this.
  9. SgCatholic

    SgCatholic Maranatha

    I believe she shouldn't have received Communion.
    With all due respect, Dolours, in that case, I still believe that she shouldn't receive, because she had not assisted at this particular mass, since she walked in after the Gospel.
    Clare A likes this.
  10. Dolours

    Dolours Powers

    Assisting at Mass is not a requirement for receiving Holy Communion. The requirements for Catholics are being in a state of grace and discerning the body and blood of Christ.
    Jeanne likes this.
  11. SgCatholic

    SgCatholic Maranatha

    How to Assist at Mass

    All the Faithful Can Take an Active Part in this Sacrifice

    Assisting at Mass, we should do four things:
    1. Reconstruct the historic setting in which took place the event in our Lord’s Life, or in that of one of His saints which is being commemorated on the appointed day. In doing this much help may be gained from the Mass of the Catechumens with its different features: the vestments, the chant, the Introit, Epistle, Gospel, etc.
    2. Offer to God, for His greater glory, the mystery of our Redeemer’s life which is being commemorated, or the acts of virtue which have been practiced by the saint whose feast it is. This is done in the Canon of the Mass; it is not fitting to communicate before having made this offering which appeases the most High and brings us divine grace.
    3. Ask of God (this is done in the Pater noster) and receive from Him by the merits and intercession of our Lord and His saints, the graces which they themselves received when they were living on earth. (This is the fruit of the Communion and the Postcommunion.)
    4. To these three ways of interior or spiritual participation, which can be practiced at every Mass, we should, as far as circumstances allow, add exterior or material participation, which may consist: in reading liturgical prayers with the priest, in singing congregational and Gregorian chant at High Mass, in responding aloud at Low Mass, and best of all, in receiving Holy Communion with the priest during Mass. In this way, we shall draw plentiful fresh draughts of the true Christian spirit at its primary source, as Pius X wished.
    What is a “Dialogue Mass”
    Certain texts of the Mass are reserved to the priest, and should never be said aloud by the faithful: we can still make these parts our own, not by a mechanical repetition but by reverent and serious reflection, corresponding to the thoughts expressed by these prayers.

    Other parts of the Mass were originally, and are still to be said by the people. They are of two kinds: those that are to be chanted by the congregation at High Mass, and those that are responded by the ministers, or by the server at Low Mass, on our behalf.

    1. A first degree of “Missa dialogata” consists in responding aloud with the server.
    2. A second degree (which deserves properly the name of “Missa recitata”) adds to the first degree the recitation with the celebrant of all the prayers which are sung by the people at Missa Cantata, the Gloria (Et in terra, etc.), the Credo (Patrem omnipotentem, etc.), the Sanctus, and the Agnus Dei.
    3. Moreover, before Holy Communion, we should say not only the Confiteor with the server, but the Domine non sum dignus, which the priest says at that moment on our behalf, may also be said three times with him.
    In the Ordinary of the Mass, all sentences that may be said by the faithful, are printed in heavier type in this Missal (see p. 538).

    The lawfulness of this use is henceforth beyond any doubt, although it remains subject to regulations from the diocesan authority. It has been expressly authorized or recommended, or even put into practice in the first or in the second degree by bishops of different countries, and it is most favorably regarded by Rome. The approval was given to the first degree in Belgium in striking terms: the Sacred Congregation of the Council approved in November 1922, the following decree of the Provincial Council of Malines: “In order to instil into the souls of the faithful a truly Christian and collective spirit, and prepare them for active participation, as is the evident desire contained in pontifical documents, one must approve (laudanda est) the practice at least in religious houses and institutions for youth, in which all people assisting at the Mass make the responses at the same time with the acolytes. On November 30, 1935, the Sacred Congregation of Rites explicitly approved both degrees of this practice, whenever the Bishop has no objection owing to local circumstances.

    Holy Mass and Holy Communion
    This assistance at the Holy Sacrifice is the ideal preparation for Holy Communion since it is the same that the Church imposes on the Pope, the bishops and all the priests, whenever they celebrate Mass. It develops in the soul those sentiments of contrition, of faith, of hope, of love and of gratitude, which are indispensable if the Eucharist is to be received with fruit. By means of this preparation, the highest act of participation in the Mass is Holy Communion. It obtains all of its fruits, because it is one of the most perfect applications of the conditions required by the decree of the saintly Pius X, when he said, “a most abundant attainment of the effects of Holy Communion is by a careful preparation and a thanksgiving proper to the reception of this divine Sacrament.”

    Jeanne likes this.
  12. Mary H

    Mary H New Member

    Another point which grieves me: people holding hands during the Pater Noster. I would not do it even if I did have someone standing near me, but I'm alone in the pew anyway. However it is the norm in churches in my deanery. I do not experience it in Rome. At the Sign of Peace people STILL get up and move about, kiss and hug, despite the fact that not long ago we were told merely to shake the hand of the person nearest to us.
    Light likes this.
  13. padraig

    padraig New Member

    Personally I prefer that the Sing of Peace not be given as I find it a distraction. I notice more and more priests not doing this. Thank heaven.
  14. Dolours

    Dolours Powers

    Yes, I understand that assisting at the full Mass is the ideal preparation for Holy Communion. It is possible, however for people to receive Communion without assisting at Mass, e.g. the housebound. I think, but could be wrong, that prayer gatherings including Communion is permitted in remote areas where regular Sunday Mass is impossible due to the shortage of priests. All I'm saying to you in respect of the lady who turned up late for Mass is that nobody knows what prevented her arriving on time. She could have been taking care of an elderly or disabled relative and had to wait until someone came to relieve her. Her car could have broken down. There could have been any number of reasons and perhaps her reason was acceptable to the priest.

    I'm grateful to you for the information supplied about assisting at Mass before receiving Holy Communion because I had experience of being offered Communion by an EMHC while taking care of an elderly relative. I declined then because I hadn't fasted. My relative has since died but should I ever be in a similar situation I will know that I shouldn't receive even if I do fulfil the fasting rule.
    SgCatholic likes this.
  15. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    So now I am kind of lost :(
    I am fairly new back in the Church. I like to attend the Latin Mass but I have no idea what is going on.
    Last year I found an old Missal on sale and bought it but I don't know how to use it. I was born after Vatican II and the Latin Mass is new to me. Should I not be going to Holy Communion if I don't know what's going on? Or am I supposed to be saying specific prayers?
    There is no one I know at Mass to ask. :(
    It is in a different city and I don't know anyone.
  16. Light

    Light Angels


    To participate at Mass, you must do everything you can (imagination etc) to get your soul realize where it is; especially after the Offeratory, it is on Calvary's hill at the foot of the cross; your soul then effuses with prayers of adoration to our Eucharistic Lord.

    God Bless
  17. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    I try to pray and adore but I think according to what SG cited I need to recite the Canon of the Mass which I don't know how to do in the Latin mass :(
  18. Mac

    Mac "To Jesus, through Mary"

    To use the Missal and follow the prayers is usually recommended. But many in my parish might just say the rosary while the Mass is on.
    So you should go to communion.No specific prayers required
    Praetorian likes this.
  19. Dolours

    Dolours Powers

    Not understanding the language and being unable to join in the responses doesn't prohibit you from receiving Holy Communion. If that were the case, the vast majority of Catholics would have been prohibited from receiving Communion when only the Latin Mass was available. If you attended Mass in Japan, China or any other country where you didn't understand the language, you would not be prohibited from receiving Communion.

    You don't need to understand the language to understand the basics of what's happening at Mass, especially at the Consecration.
    Jeanne, SgCatholic and Praetorian like this.
  20. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    Thanks Mac. Do you happen to know any resources to learn how to use the missal?
    Do you know if the missal sold today is different than the one from 1961?
    I have a Fulton J. Sheen Missal and it says it is printed in 1961.

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