While studying theology at St. Vincent Seminary, parishioner Ray Takacs became even more intrigued by something that had always called him. He knew that the Holy Mass held mystery and truth beyond the mere prayers and actions of the priest and people. Mass looks simple on the surface, he thought, but there is much more. It is rooted in the bible and contains prayers and activities taught to us by Jesus himself! In fact, Saint Pope John Paul II described the Mass as “Heaven on Earth.”
The seven articles contained here were written as part of Ray’s studies and most recently were included in the Saint Agnes, North Huntingdon, PA church bulletin over the course of seven weeks in the fall of 2016. Each article examines the Mass in a way that helps answer some of the questions even the most experienced Catholic might have but in a way that doesn’t require specific Catholic knowledge. Anyone who has attended Mass or wishes to attend Mass can benefit from the information here.
In these articles, you will find the answer to these and many more questions:
- How does the Mass help me develop a personal relationship with Jesus?
- How does the Mass relate to the bible? When and why do the people stand during Mass? Sit? Kneel?
- What are the parts of the Mass and how do they relate to spiritual growth?
- Why does the priest do certain things like kiss the Book of the Gospel?
The articles have been moved here to our Faith Formation web and we invite you to read the articles, one at a time, perhaps one per day or one per week and spend a little time in meditation and prayer after reading each one. Please use this resource to help you take a few steps along the way of your faith journey. God bless you!
Part 1: Heaven on Earth
Part 2: Biblical Roots of the Mass
Part 3: Introductory Rites
Part 4: Liturgy of the Word
Part 5: Liturgy of the Eucharist
Part 6: Communion Rite and Closing
Part 7: Heaven’s View of Mass
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The following are suggestions for further study:
The Lamb’s Supper: The Mass as Heaven on Earth, by Scott Hahn. Per Dr. Hahn’s site: “Each time we celebrate the Mass we enter into the heavenly liturgy which is so powerfully and beautifully described in the Book of Revelation. The Lamb’s Supper: The Mass as Heaven on Earth, will help you understand the Book of Revelation in light of the Mass.”
The story of Catalina Rivas at www.michaeljournal.org/holymass.htm. Catalina is said to receive messages from Mary, Jesus, and the angels while she participates in Holy Mass.
Rediscovering The Mass, an online guide presented by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. The site asks: “Are you seeking to rediscover your friendship with Jesus? Haven’t been to Mass in a while and wondering where to start?”
Reasons to Believe: How to Understand, Explain, and Defend the Catholic Faith, by Scott Hahn. Per Dr. Hahn’s site: “This book unravels mysteries, corrects misunderstandings, and offers thoughtful, straightforward responses to common objections about the Catholic faith.”