|Posted on June 7, 2011 at 8:34 AM|
One of my pet peeves about going to Mass today is all of the chattering and visiting that takes place before Mass. In the old days, everyone was quiet, and prayed before Mass. There was a lot of reverence for Jesus in the Tabernacle back then. Today, in some churches, it appears that the emphasis has been taken off reverence for Jesus and put squarely on fellowship. Now I am all for fellowship, bigtime, but not in the sanctuary. Fellowship should be after Mass, IMHO, in the foyer, outside of Church, or in the Parish Hall. We should be "preparing to celebrate this sacred mystery", as the priest says at every Mass, even before we get to Church. If we're listening to the news, or stuffing ourselves with bacon and eggs right before Mass, I'm not sure we are properly preparing for this sacred ritual where heaven meets earth.
So please try to be super quiet before Mass so as not to disturb others who may be trying to pray. This can be difficult with kids, for sure, but it isn't very difficult to not go and gossip or chat with someone in the sanctuary before Mass. IMHO, the Bishops need to put the tabernacle back into the main sanctuary at all churches. This leads to a reverence that just isn't there if the tabernacle is hidden in a back chapel and is not front and center on the altar. And may the priests please, please, please, start hearing confessions before all Masses, on Sundays as well as weekdays. The "call the rectory for an appointment" thing just isn't working. Re-emphasizing the sacrament of confession and how it is so important to receive the Eucharist only in the state of grace would truly help the reverence in Mass, I think.
And bring back the Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament occasionally! If it truly is Jesus, and it is, then let's all start acting like it!