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"Build Your Life Around This"

Posted on the 22 May 2014 by Brutallyhonest @Ricksteroni

Jennifer Fitz is writing about the Sunday Obligation:

God doesn’t want you skipping Mass just because you aren’t picture-perfect.

There’s a tension between giving our best to God on Sundays, and the divine expectation that we’ll turn out (if we are in fact able) even when we haven’t got a best to give. Why?

The Holy Eucharist is the food for our souls. There is a particular grace, supernatural life, to be received Eucharistby devoting a day a week – Sunday, the day of the Resurrection – to rest and to the worship of God in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

How important is this weekly nourishment? So important that without it our very soul is in danger. We would never say, “Do I really have to eat today? Can’t people live for days or even weeks without food?” In the same way that our parents made sure they put something on the table, and admonished us to eat healthy foods, the Church admonishes us to get the holy nourishment we need from God.

It is so important that God tells us: Build your life around this. Don’t let this divine gift be the thing you grab in passing if you’ve got a minute to stop. Don’t let it be an afterthought.

Put as much effort into getting to Mass on Sundays as you would into any other necessity of life. I might put off grocery-shopping because I’m too sick to get to the store, but I wouldn’t let my fridge go empty for days if I could possibly do otherwise. Sure, I’d like to have a list made and even look half-decent when I turn out at the store, but if all I can do is slink in and grab the essentials, I’m going to do it.

In the same way, if you’ve made the Holy Mass the most important part of your week, there are going to be times when it’s all you can do to just show up. When it takes everything you have to drag your rear end into a pew before the opening hymn is finished. After all, there’s a line between, “I truly cannot go today,” and “Well, yes, if I work it just right I can get there.” Just over the hairy edge into “Yes I can” isn’t very pretty.

But our Lord says, “Come anyway!” You can always try again next week for the red carpet appearance; this week just turn out and pray as best you can.

It's tough to understand, once you've come to believe in the Real Presence, how a faithful Catholic would purposely miss taking in Christ as often as possible and minimally on a weekly basis.  It is for me anyway.

Think on this a moment.

We are all seekers of God, whether we know it or not.  The faithful are constantly in pursuit of Him.  And for Catholics, that pursuit ends by the taking in of Christ in the Eucharist.  In that moment, we come face to face with God and in fact, we take Him into ourselves where in the end, His cells intermingle with our own.  It's unfathomable on the one hand and yet so very real for those who believe.

I've not missed a Sunday obligation since my return to the Church in March of 2011 but once, and that only because I happened to have been on a cruise ship.  I'm not trumpeting my piousness by any stretch in revealing this because the fact is I'm far from pious.  What I am communicating however is my need for God and my belief that this need is met in a tangible way for me everytime I take Holy Communion. And it's become something I simply won't miss.

Meeting this obligation weekly has made a tremendous difference in my life not because of anything I'm doing but because of what He's doing in me in that weekly meet up.

The Real Presence is the real reason why I am, and will always be, Catholic.

Carry on.

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