Attending daily mass is so important to me, and I have been reaping the benefits of it for several decades. I am retired now and it is easy for me to attend the 9:00am mass, right after I am finished with the gym. When I was working, I had to attend the 7:00am mass and then go to the gym and then to work. Either way, I made the decision to go to daily mass and to go to the gym. I figured I needed to be healthy both spiritually and physically. It is hard to separate the two. I would like to share with you some of the benefits I have seen by going to daily mass in hopes that you too will try to attend daily mass or that if you already do, you may find support for what you are doing.
1 – Being in the Presence of the Lord. I try to get to mass about 20 minutes early so that I can just sit in His presence. I offer Him praise and sit quietly listening for any Word he may give me. So often I have grown in my love of Him and grown in my ability to learn to trust Him in all things. Our God is an awesome God and His love for us knows no limits. It is so good to be in His presence. It is unbelievable how a short time alone before the Lord in the tabernacle can improve your prayer life all day long.
2 – Listening to His Word. Every day at mass we have two readings and a responsorial psalm. The first reading is usually from the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) and the second reading is from the Gospels. The Church does a wonderful job of presenting cycles of readings so that you basically go through all of the important parts of the whole bible in three years. Sundays are set on a three year cycle and weekday readings are set on a two year cycle. If you only attend Sunday mass, you do not get the fullness of the readings cycle. Beginning each day listening to God’s Word and the homily about it can really impact you all day long. The Church also follows different Liturgical Seasons such as Advent, Lent, Easter, Pentecost and Ordinary time. The weekday readings emphasize the importance of these Seasons on a daily basis. Immersing yourself in God’s Word is power giving.
3 – Receiving the Body and Blood of Jesus. Jesus made it extremely clear that if we want to be filled with the fullness of life, we need to eat His body and drink His blood (Read John Chapter 6). I would have to say that His Body and His Blood fill me with graces constantly. Sometimes there is a reason that I cannot attend the morning mass (snow, Doctor, etc) and when that happens, I feel such a loss. We are used to taking daily multi-vitamins and daily coffee etc. to pick us up, but to me, nothing picks me up better that receiving Him at daily mass. The strength given to me by that lasts all day and affects every part of the person that I am. I believe that I have an abundant life because I receive my Lord every day in the Eucharist.
4 – Experiencing Community. Daily mass has less people in it than does Sunday mass. Because of this, you get to meet these people and share your lives with them. I know this can be true of Sunday mass, but daily mass emphasizes it. You learn of your fellow parishioners ups and downs and you share a better level of community. In our parish, every Wednesday we go over to our parish center and share with each other what the readings of the day have meant to us. We usually have about 20 attend and it is a wonderful experience. Also, at daily mass you get to know the things that are happening as they happen, not one week later like at Sunday mass. We always have people who are struggling with health and life issues and daily mass allows us to be more supportive, especially on the days that they need it the most. Community is a very important gift.
5 – Know your Priests and Deacons. Daily mass gives us more of an opportunity to know the clergy that support our parishes. They also get to know you better. There is usually more time for meeting with the clergy. You can also get to appreciate the homilies that they give. You can bring support to them, and they can bring support to you.
In closing, I cannot emphasize enough how important daily mass is to me. I feel that I am a much stronger Christian because of it. I know that I am closer to the Lord, and hear His voice better because of it. It is also wonderful to know that people all over the world are hearing the same scriptures and receiving the same Lord at the same time I do. You certainly get a fuller appreciation of the gift that the Church is to the world. There are so many great books on the mass, but one that really touched me is Scott Hahn’s “The Lamb’s Supper: The Mass as Heaven on Earth”. In it we see that we are really sharing in a little bit of heaven every time we attend mass. I personally want to do that every day.
I will end with some quotes that Dr. Taylor Marshall found about the Eucharist. They say so much. He says: These quotes remind me of the hidden mystery of the Holy Mass. I plan to review them before Mass during Lent. I’d encourage you to do the same if you also struggle with distractions. I may print them out on a card and put them in my missal:
- When the Eucharist is being celebrated, the sanctuary is filled with countless angels who adore the divine victim immolated on the altar. ~ St. John Chrysostom
- The angels surround and help the priest when he is celebrating Mass. ~ St. Augustine
- If we really understood the Mass, we would die of joy. ~ Saint Jean Vianney
- The celebration of Holy Mass is as valuable as the death of Jesus on the cross. ~ Saint Thomas Aquinas
- Once, St. Teresa was overwhelmed with God’s Goodness and asked Our Lord “How can I thank you?” Our Lord replied, “ATTEND ONE MASS.”
- “My Son so loves those who assist at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass that, if it were necessary He would die for them as many times as they’ve heard Masses.” Our Lady to Blessed Alan.
- When we receive Holy Communion, we experience something extraordinary – a joy, a fragrance, a well-being that thrills the whole body and causes it to exalt. ~ Saint Jean Vianney
- There is nothing so great as the Eucharist. If God had something more precious, He would have given it to us. ~ Saint Jean Vianney
- When we have been to Holy Communion, the balm of love envelops the soul as the flower envelops the bee. ~ Saint Jean Vianney
- It would be easier for the world to survive without the sun than to do without Holy Mass. ~ St. Pio of Pietrelcina
That last quote from Saint Pio is profound. The entire cosmos is sustained by the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass…