Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sunday Obligation

I'ts Sunday, and I'm about to get ready to go to an early Mass.  I'm doing this because faithful Catholics are obligated to attend Mass each and every Sunday (and on holy days of obligation as well).  But there's more to it than that.

That word--"obligation"--gets a bad rap sometimes.  It seems that nowadays, people often view the obligation to attend Mass as a negative thing.  But going to Mass is not a punishment (in fact, it's a privilege!); it's not some awful chore that we must get out of the way (all the while hoping that Father doesn't ramble on when he gives his sermon) so that we can go out for a nice brunch or rush home and start fixing our game day snacks.  Going out for brunches and watching football games on a big screen T.V. are great Sunday activities for families; but the most important Sunday activity is the Mass, for it is celebrated at the instruction of Our Lord Himself, who told his apostles at the Last Supper to "do this in memory of me." 

At the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, we commemorate Christ's ultimate sacrifice on the Cross. He gave His life for us; the least we can do is joyfully give Him a mere hour of our time every Sunday! 

I read these two lines on a Catholic website, and it sums this post up perfectly: Understanding why the Mass is so important is the first step to loving the Mass.  And when you love the Mass, going to church on Sunday no longer feels like an "I have to," but instead becomes an "I need, I want to."

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