The centre of our life.
Weekly Mass is a central part of the life of our school. We are so fortunate to have our own Chapel and every week part of the school celebrates Mass with a different Form taking responsibility for aspects of the organisation of the Mass, for example, the readers, bidding prayers and Offertory Procession.
Mrs Flannelly recently led Form III Alpha in learning more about the sacrifice of the Mass and here pupils report on what they have learnt.
Isabel Jeffries summarises her findings: ‘What is Mass? Mass is a place with a calm atmosphere, a place where you can relax and be with God. We have come to understand that the Mass is God’s greatest gift. Also that it is a presence that people cannot put in to words.
At the beginning of Mass, we come together with our Church family and make the sign of the cross, ‘In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit’. The priest invites us to acknowledge our sins and we ask for forgiveness. Then we have the readings, they are a proclamation of the word of God. The reading is taken from the Bible, either from the Old Testament or the New Testament. This is then followed by the reading of a psalm – psalms are ancient hymns and poems in the Bible. For example, ‘The Lord is my Shepherd, there is nothing I shall want’ (Psalm 23). After this comes the reading of the Gospel by the priest and a sermon.
After this is Offertory and this is followed by the Consecration. For me the Consecration is the most important part of the Mass, because it is where Jesus truly becomes present with us on the altar and we join with everyone present in remembering the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus.
After the distribution of Holy Communion and at the end of the Mass we remember that Jesus has come to us in a very special way and make a promise to God to live out the Gospel and make the world a better place.
Every Mass is a celebration of the life, death and the resurrection of Jesus, who is truly human and truly God.’
Thanuja Jeganathan had this to say, ‘Mass is a special invitation from God. It is a peaceful and calm atmosphere, where you can share your thoughts and worries with God. It is a time where a community comes together to praise God and to remember Jesus’ death and why he died for us.
There are four parts to the Mass: The Penitential Rite, The Liturgy of the Word, The Consecration and Holy Communion. The Penitential Rite is where we talk to God about our worries and thoughts. Most importantly, we ask Jesus for forgiveness for our sins. We say sorry to God for the wrong we have done and we say sorry to the people we have harmed. We do this because Jesus had told us to love one another. Therefore, we need to show our love for God.
The Liturgy of the Word is where we and then the priest read from the Bible, the priest reading the Gospel. We listen to the readings because every reading has a useful and important message in it. We need to think about using these messages in our daily life. By doing this, we would have a stronger relationship with God and we will be closer to Him.
The Eucharistic Prayer, as part of which is the Consecration, is the part where the power of the Holy Spirit transforms the bread and wine into Jesus’ body (the bread) and blood (the wine). We do this as it is a remembrance of the Last Supper. The Last Supper is when Jesus gave the bread and wine to his twelve disciples and said “Do this in memory of me.”
The Holy Communion is the part where we receive the body and blood of Christ. The body of Christ signifies an offering of our daily work and all of the ordinary things we do to help others. If we offer them love by helping them, we receive love from them. The blood of Christ wine signifies the happiness – the achievements we want to offer God. We need to receive Holy Communion to forgive all our sins and importantly, to make the Christian community stronger.
We go to Mass to participate – not just to observe.’
Categories: Faith Life Priory Post Senior Whole School