As Holy Week approaches, the first day of the Triduum on Holy Thursday celebrates the institution of the Eucharist and the priesthood. Here in Wexford town, there will be only one parish celebration of Mass of the Lord's Supper in Bride St. Part of the reason why there is but one celebration is because the numbers of people partaking of the Eucharist On Holy Thursday night has decreased significantly over recent years.
We encourage everyone to see the Easter Triduum as the pivotal moment of our Christin faith and to partake in the Easter ceremonies as an essential part of our Christian commitment .
The Catholic Truth Society has recently published a leaflet entitled:
'WHY SHOULD I GO TO MASS ON SUNDAY?'
As part of this leaflet, it outlines five reasons why we should commit ourselves once again to Sunday Eucharist:
IT IS JESUS HIMSELF WHO INVITES US TO MASS
The most fundamental reason to come to Mass is that Jesus is inviting each of us. In St Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians he writes that Jesus:
On the night when he was betrayed took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, “This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me. (1 Cor 11:23-24)
2. AT MASS OUR FAITH AND FRIENDSHIP WITH JESUS DEEPENS AND GROWS
The much-loved Catholic author, J.R.R.Tolkien said “The only cure for sagging or fainting faith is Communion.” This word, Communion, means a profound union with Christ, specifically in the Eucharist. Because Jesus is truly present at the Mass, this is where we go to form and deepen our faith and friendship with Christ.
3. BECAUSE VIRTUAL IS NO REPLACEMENT FOR THE REAL THING
Live-streamed Masses have been a blessing for many people during the Covid-19 pandemic, and continue to nourish the faith of those who are simply unable to attend in person. In ordinary circumstances, however, virtual Masses are no substitute for being physically present. We all know from the experience of being separated from our loved ones that meeting on a screen is not the same as being together in the same place.
A virtual Mass can be a powerful aid to us making a spiritual communion when illness or grave obligations prevent our being at church, but it is not the same as being both spiritually and physically present to God in the same place where he becomes sacramentally present to us.
4. BECAUSE GOING TO MASS HELPS US GROW IN HUMILITY
Some people worry they aren’t holy enough to go Mass; some think they don’t need Mass to be holy. But there is an old saying: ‘the Church is a hospital for sinners, not a club for saints.’ If the Church is a hospital, the Mass is her medicine.
The Mass reveals and offers God’s mercy to sinners. If we come to Mass like the blind man at Bethsaida, crying Kyrie eleison! (Lord have mercy!), we will grow in humility, recognise that we are in need of help, find the source of that help, and grow in holiness, which is intimacy with God. We cannot heal ourselves, but we can come to Mass and be healed.
5. BECAUSE GOING TO MASS DEEPENS OUR SENSE OF MISSION
Mission is at the heart of the Mass. The English word ‘Mass’ is missa in Latin, which comes from missio, meaning ‘mission’ or ‘sending’. After we have received the Lord and have given thanks, we are blessed and sent on mission to live and proclaim the Gospel we have heard, sharing with everyone we encounter what has been given to us in the Mass.