PARTICIPATING IN HOLY MASS - PRESENCE OF GOD
O Jesus immolated at every moment of the day on our altars, let me share in Your Sacrifice.
“The Encyclical Mediator Dei (Pius XII) exhorts all the faithful to “participate in the Eucharistic Sacrifice, not passively, carelessly, and with distractions, but with such ardor and fervor that we shall be closely associated with the High Priest.” It is not enough to be present at Mass; we must take part, “participate” in it. In Holy Mass, Jesus continues to sacrifice Himself for us, and to offer Himself to His Father, in order to obtain divine blessings for us. It is true that Jesus offers Himself through the ministry of the priest, but the priest makes the offering in the name of all the faithful, and they, in union with him - as the words of the Canon indicate: “for whom we offer, or who offer up to You this sacrifice of praise.” This means that the faithful also are invited to offer the divine Victim with the priest. Mediator Dei states it thus: “to unite their intentions of praise, petition, expiation, and thanksgiving with those of the priest, or better, the Sovereign Priest Himself.”
“Jesus sacrificed Himself alone on Calvary for our salvation, but on the altar, He wishes to associate us with His immolation; for, if the Head is sacrificed, the members must be sacrificed also. Let a poor creature offer in expiation to God his sacrifice and even his life. What value could this have? None, because we are nothing. But if this offering is united to Jesus’ offering, then it becomes, with Him, by Him, and in Him, an acceptable sacrifice to God the Father. What strength and generosity the soul will draw from this living, constant participation in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass!
“O my Savior, in union with the offering and the sacrifice of Yourself which You made to the Father and in His honor, I offer myself to you to be a bloody victim of Your will, a victim immolated for Your glory and that of Your Father. Unite me to Yourself, O good Jesus, draw me into Your sacrifice, so that I may be sacrificed with You and by You. Consume me entirely in the sacred fire of Your divine love, and grant that hereafter my whole life may be a continual sacrifice of praise, glory, and love for Your Father and for You” (St. John Eudes).
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Father Mark Groeger is the Parish Administrator of Prince of Peace Church in Northern Cambria, PA.