Thursday, September 18, 2014
Six reasons to take your family to daily Mass
We don’t want a contraceptive sanctuary
Having to “sit quiet and still” (this is what we aim for with our four year old) at Mass more than just on Sunday helps build the habit of good Mass behavior. It is shorter than Sunday Mass, so it helps children build stamina and self-discipline for the longer Sunday liturgy. I have noticed that at Sunday Mass my children have lost all attention by the middle of the homily, but at daily Mass they last through to the end and notice more things. It also teaches parents how to pray in a different way than they used to, prayer is an internal and external thing, and having to wrangle children through all of Mass definitely builds those interior praying abilities.
More frequent attendance of Mass will familiarize your children with what is going on in the Mass and help them to pay better attention and understand the liturgy more fully. The Mass will become something they look forward to and expect on a daily basis. What is better for anybody than a desire to commune with God in the liturgy He gave us in order to worship Him?
Your family will become familiar with Scripture through hearing it proclaimed in the readings at Mass. I love to see my daughters perk up when they hear a familiar passage. We reinforce the Gospel we hear at Mass by reading it again after dinner. Then we often will discuss the story, as our four year old is full of questions.
This one is the most important reason. The opportunity for frequent reception of the Eucharist (when we are free from serious sin) is the best gift given to us by the Church. It makes us better people and better parents. And when our children are of age to receive, they too can receive this grace that will help them spend eternity with God.
“A family that prays together, stays together.” That is the phrase, right? Praying in your home together builds unity, but even more-so does the public prayer of the liturgy. In the Mass we pray the along with the same sacrifice that has been made for 2000 years since the Last Supper, uniting the whole Church as one; this same liturgy unites our families together when we go together.
I have always heard positive comments at daily Mass from the other daily Mass attendees. If others are negative, they have always been charitable enough not to say so. Even the priests saying Mass have always been very encouraging of us coming to daily Masses. In general, those whom I have seen at daily Mass are middle-aged and older; or they are the school children from the parish school. I suspect that for most of the people who attend daily Mass, seeing a family together at daily (not morally-obligated Sunday Mass) gives them hope. Imagine what it would be like if many families were at every daily Mass? It would remind us all that the Mass is a place for public prayer, and that having all ages at Mass is having the whole Church represented. If someone needs a quiet place for private prayer, then a quiet adoration chapel would be a better option than the public worship of the Church. People should not be discouraging others from taking their kids to church; we do not want the Church to be known as a Contraceptive Sanctuary.
To read the ChurchPop story, click here.