People of God,
The Mass is the source and summit of all we do as Catholics. Sometimes we priests and the lay faithful can forget this essential reality within our Catholic lives. It is essential that you and I don't merely show up to Mass but participate, give, and receive from the Divine liturgy.
It is first important for you and I to prepare our hearts for what we are about the celebrate. This makes it necessary for us to get to Mass early and sit in the presence of the Lord before Mass begins. Don't forget the precious Body is reserved in the tabernacle and should be reverenced with great admiration.
Next we must enter into the Mass knowing our need for God in all we are about to accomplish and receive. That's why we ask God for forgiveness and seek His divine assistance as we begin each Mass. This is directly tearing open our hearts to receive the living Word of God that is a gift from God to nourish us and help us to become more like Christ Our Lord.
As the Word of God is being read, try to always ask yourself the question, "What does this reading have to do with me?". God speaks to us in every reading and so it is important that we listen and gather all the spiritual gifts that God is freely giving us. It is also important to try to gain one insight from every Homily that you hear. That's a rule for me, so that I am encouraged to pay attention to God's word through another instrument of God's grace.
It is important then to take what God has given us from the readings to enter into the Eucharistic portion of the Divine Liturgy. YOU ARE NOT A SPECTATOR!!! You are offering the represented Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ with me, the priest. We all need to take this action serious and with great thanksgiving!!! It has become a bit of a bad habit here in Galveston to run out the Church after you have received our Lord. This is a bit of a problem because we should all sit and reflect and thank God for the great gift that He has given us. It is not okay to show up late or leave early. I encourage all of us to work on giving our Lord the time that he deserves.
Even after dismissal, mass is never over. It is necessary for all to build community and get to know your fellow parishioners. It is easier and a fuller experience to worship and know the community you are in. All must also give time, talent, and treasure to the Church and local community. This is given by God's demand and by His grace of hope and encouragement in our lives. Make Mass awesome!!! Be all you are created to be in the Divine Liturgy of the Heavens.
God Bless you and your family,