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The Holy Mass is a Passion Show

by Ramon Mescallado

The Holy Mass is a Passion Show

A Personal Reflection by Ramon Mescallado

"... the Eucharist introduces us into real communion with Jesus and His Mystery ... between the Eucharist that we celebrate and our life, as a Church and as individual Christians. How do we experience the Eucharist? ...

When we go to Sunday Mass, how do we live it? Is it only a moment of celebration, an established tradition, an opportunity to find oneself or to feel justified, or is it something more?" (Pope Francis, General Audience, February 12, 2014)

His Holiness completes his address by focusing on three (3) principal indicators if we are "living the Eucharist in a good way or not very well: ...

  1. our way of looking or considering others;
  2. the grace of our feeling forgiven and our own readiness to forgive others;
  3. the relationship between the Eucharistic Celebration and the life of our Christian communities.

Relating to our Brethren

Jesus Christ constantly renews His Gift of Self. His humanity --- from His Nativity through His Passion and Death --- His Divinity ---from Resurrection, Ascension, through Eternity --- is an act of total sharing of His Self out of love.

For us, this means sharing with our sisters and brothers, "their aspirations, their problems, what stir their soul and their life." Within our families, among our friends, and, even strangers, we are presented with oodles of opportunities to show our love for the Lord by loving others.

A myriad of ministries confront our good intentions to help the impoverished, comfort the afflicted, and work with the marginalized. Our resolve to actualize our desires depends on our personal passion --- our enthusiasm and excitement about doing and living out our intentions. Passion is easier said and claimed than shown by our efforts and perseverance as modeled by Jesus Christ on the Cross.

Forgiven and Forgiving

The Holy Father empathizes, "why must one go to church, given that those who regularly participate in Holy Mass are still sinners like others?"

We celebrate the Eucharist not because we want to appear good or to show off that we are better than others; but, precisely because we acknowledge our own sinfulness and dependence on the mercy of God and His forgiveness. Right after the Introductory Rites, we start Holy Mass ..." I confess to almighty God and to you, my brothers and sisters, that I have greatly sinned, ..."

The Priest then invokes ..."You were sent to heal the contrite heart: Lord, have mercy,"... We repentantly reply, "Lord have mercy..."

Our Lord unconditionally forgives us. Look up at the Cross and accept His love. Our Lord REALLY comes to us in the Consecrated Bread and Wine.

Setting down the Precious Blood in the chalice and the Body of Christ on the paten, the Priest, with hands joined in prayerful gesture, ...

"At the Savior's command and formed by divine teaching we dare to say: ..."

As we dare to pray to Our Father let us pay attention to our petition and the voluntary condition we ourselves set for (and require of?) the Lord:

"... Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses AS WE forgive those who trespass against us ..."

We pray what we mean, and mean what we pray. Note that the petition we ask for and the condition we set forth are both in the present tense, and therefore, meant not only for a moment in Time but is ongoing all the time, every time, in Time.

Life of our Christian Communities

"The Eucharist is precisely an act of Christ!

Christ makes Himself present in the altar and gathers us around Him, to nourish us with His Word and with His life. The mission and the very identity of the Church flows from the Eucharist.

Our participation in the Eucharist leads us to an enduring communion with Christ. He Himself enters our lives and He lives in us. The grace of the Real Presence of Jesus Christ permeates our Christian communities and we live consistent with our celebration of the Liturgy of the Holy Mass.

Our hearts are filled with Trust and Hope as we live out the Liturgy of the Word ... "he who eats My Flesh and drinks My Blood has Eternal Life, and I will raise him up at the last day" (John 6:54).

The Vicar of Christ exhorts the People of God, "Let us live the Eucharist with the spirit of faith, of prayer, of forgiveness, of repentance, of communal joy, of concern for the needy and for the needs of so many brothers and sisters, in the certainty that the Lord will fulfill what He has promised: Eternal Life. So be it!