My wife and I have been attending daily mass ever since we moved to Zanesville Ohio (a few months ago). Before we were married, we lived close to each other at the Newman center at Bowling Green State University and attended mass frequently also.
Since we arrived here, we made daily mass a priority with the idea in mind that this daily sacrifice and prayer would be a healthy routine to establish. This was made easier in that we found a pleasant daily-mass-going community, greater liturgy and homilies by the Dominican friars (St. Thomas Aquinas Parish), and the church is not far away and easy to get to over lunch hour.
While I generally enjoy daily mass, I have tended to regard it as just another spiritual practice. Not that I didn’t appreciate the eucharist, the source and summit of the faith (and all that) but going every day never seemed that special.
In prayer at mass today, I decided that I will now make daily mass one of my highest priorities.
Here’s the thing: Why do I work? Why do I save my money? What are we working towards?
Well, at least in theory, personal holiness is my first priority as well as the spiritual health of my family. Thus my working/saving/supporting must be to try to provide the kind of life that will help my family to become holy.
It occurred to me today that daily mass is the kind of thing one pencils into one’s hypothetical perfect schedule. You know, the “If I had a million dollars I would…” kind of hypothetical. When a devout catholic does this, “being able to go to daily mass” is usually on the list. It’s just obvious!
And yet, I’m always tempted to think of mass as “just another nice spiritual practice”, rather than the source and summit of my relationship with God in His Church. I would list mass as part of the perfect schedule, and yet how often do I find myself getting weary of it?
I guess what really hit me today was that if I am given a good job, money enough for the gas, and a great Catholic church nearby and I am NOT seeing daily mass as a no-brainer, then I need to think about what the goals and priorities in my life really are.
There are many things we have to save our money for – house, cars, our children’s education, etc. But we have already been given the means to take our family to mass every day, and if holiness is indeed our first priority, how could we not take the opportunity?
My wife and I are saving our money, working hard, preparing to give our family the best life possible, but part of that “best life” is already ours for free – a daily celebration of God’s love. A daily communion with the God of the universe and His body the Church. Daily readings from His holy words. A daily sacrament of cosmic life-changing power.
With this in mind, its not that we are required to go to mass everyday, but why wouldn’t we?
It is a great undeserved privelege which we will be appreciating more in the future.We really are living the dream!
Your brother in Truth,