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Daily Bread: Why Catholics Attend Daily Mass

My eyes were on the clock, calculating what time I’d have to start making supper, as I mentioned to my mom that my husband had suggested we go to daily Mass that evening.

With a quizzical raising of her brows, she asked, “Why? Is that because you missed it yesterday?”

Daily Bread: Why Catholics attend daily Mass

It was Monday night. Her question surprised me, and made me realize how much I’d gotten used to going to daily Mass occasionally.

When I worked downtown before Sunshine’s birth, the Cathedral was a few blocks away. If I power walked over there, I could make it just in time for noon Mass. It was a nice chance to get away from the office for some peace and quiet, some prayer and reflection.

Why Attend Daily Mass

Sunday is a mini-Easter, a weekly feast day to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection. Daily Mass doesn’t replace that. For me, it’s a way to take a break from my daily routines and focus on God, a way to make space for Him in my everyday life.

The Church obliges the faithful to take part in the Divine Liturgy on Sundays and feast days and, prepared by the sacrament of Reconciliation, to receive the Eucharist at least once a year, if possible during the Easter season. But the Church strongly encourages the faithful to receive the holy Eucharist on Sundays and feast days, or more often still, even daily. ~ CCC 1389

I once thought it would get boring to be saying or listening to the same thing several times a week. Yet even though the words are the same, my attitude, feelings, or circumstances are different each day as I come there. That makes the prayers and readings different and fresh each time.

A Spiritual Habit

I also realized that, like any good habit, the habit of attending daily Mass needs to be developed. The more I do it, the more I enjoy it. Exercise is as good for my body as Mass is for my soul, yet doing either only once or twice a week will leave me counting the minutes until they are done and I can “get on” with my other tasks. Making both a part of my daily routine helps me to appreciate them more, even as I enjoy the physical and spiritual benefits of the good habits.

There are a couple families in our church who attend Mass every day. I admire them, and at first I thought, “Wow, they must be holy.” Then I realized that if I attend Mass more often, it’s not because I’m more of a saint. Rather, I’m more of a sinner and need the graces offered there.

Every Holy Mass, heard with devotion, produces in our souls marvelous effects, abundant spiritual and material graces which we, ourselves, do not know… It is easier for the earth to exist without the sun than without the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass! ~ St. Padre Pio

My husband explained that Catholics take literally the prayer, “Give us this day our daily bread.” So we come to daily Mass together to receive God in the Eucharist. I can pray and read my Bible by myself—and some days, I prefer that—or I can do it with others before the Eucharist.

The Eucharist is “the source and summit of the Christian life.”  … For in the blessed Eucharist is contained the whole spiritual good of the Church, namely Christ himself. ~ CCC 1324

Taking children to Mass adds another dimension. Right now, at 7 months old, Sunshine likes Mass—there’s people to smile at, things to listen to, and hymn books and prayer sheets to munch and crunch. It’s fairly easy to keep her quiet and close, though I know this will get harder as she gets more active and independent. And I hope that, by setting a good example for her even now, I will help her develop good faith habits and a good relationship with Jesus.

For mommy, daily Mass is a moment of fellowship with others as well as with God. It’s a chance to get out of the house and get a fresh perspective on my daily tasks. And so I continue to head for daily Mass whenever I can.

From this moment on, live the Eucharist fully; be persons for whom the Holy Mass, Communion, and Eucharistic adoration are the center and summit of their whole life. ~ St. John Paul II

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