Every day of every week, the Catholic Church celebrates a holy day – the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. We are only obligated to go to this Holy Sacrifice once a week in keeping with the third commandment – keep holy the Sabbath. But why do we need to keep a day or time for the Lord? Why do we need to go to a Church to celebrate the Mass? Why can’t we just spend time with our families and make that our ‘Sabbath day’?
If you do one thing to upgrade your Catholic faith, it is to spend time weekly at the Holy Mass.
Why can’t we just spend time at home with our family? Because Jesus gave us the greatest gift He could have, besides dying for our sins; He gave us Himself in the Holy Eucharist. According to Matthew 26:25-28, when Jesus said, “Take, eat; this is my body,” He didn’t mean it as a symbol of His body. This IS HIS BODY! This is the BLOOD of the new covenant. Jesus was the new Covenant, therefore when He said those words, He was saying this IS HIS BLOOD! Not wine dressed up as him, but His Blood. No, the properties of these the host and wine doesn’t change – looks the same, tastes the same, smells the same, feels the same – but it is so different because during this blessing the Angels bring this sacrifice to Heaven and transforms the host and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ (see Transubstantiation).
Even if we have mortal sins (See Reconciliation to be forgiven) and can not take of the Body and Blood in Holy Communion, we are still called to Mass to celebrate this Holy Sacrifice. This can only be witnessed by actually GOING TO CHURCH and spending time with Him celebrating Him alone.
I totally understand how difficult it can be to get to Mass – kids activities, sleeping in, other family obligations, hard to take young kids – but it doesn’t matter. God knows what is in your heart, and the effort that it took to get you and your family there. Even if you have to constantly take the crying child out, or work on keeping them quiet and don’t feel like you got a thing out of Mass, the most important thing is that you and your family were there. Pick a time, and stick to it. That is the easiest way to keep the habit, and let others know this is what you are doing and other activities will have to wait.
Does your parish not have a good Mass time for you or don’t care for the Pastor’s homilies? Look around. There are usually other Parish’s with other Mass times on Saturday night, Sunday day or evening that can fit into your schedule. Don’t stop going to Church because of a Priest – go to Church for GOD alone!
Pray! God will lead you to the Mass or Parish He wants to see you at each week.