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Daily Catholic Question

How late may I come to Mass?

Would you say that someone who walked into the upper room just as Jesus blessed the bread and wine and said the words of consecration and then walked out immediately after was present for the Last Supper? Or had shared in and assisted at the Last Supper? As I read the Gospels, the Last Supper was no five-minute affair. Jesus prayed long and offered the apostles much instruction before consecrating and distributing the bread and wine.

Moral theologians used to speak of the principal parts of the Mass (offertory, consecration and Communion), and insist that a person must be present for all three parts to satisfy the Sunday or holy day obligation.

Today liturgists and theologians do not use that terminology. Liturgists speak of the celebration of the Word and the celebration of the Eucharist as the parts of the Mass. Reasons might excuse a person’s coming late. And there may be reasons or difficulties that would excuse a person who missed a notable part of Mass from attending another Mass. But a person who has missed a significant part of Mass has not fulfilled the canonical obligation.

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Sunday, April 13, 2014
Daily Catholic Question for 4/12/2014 Daily Catholic Question for 4/14/2014


Alphonsus Rodriguez: Tragedy and challenge beset today’s saint early in life, but Alphonsus Rodriguez found happiness and contentment through simple service and prayer. 
<p>Born in Spain in 1533, Alphonsus inherited the family textile business at 23. Within the space of three years, his wife, daughter and mother died; meanwhile, business was poor. Alphonsus stepped back and reassessed his life. He sold the business and, with his young son, moved into his sisters’ home. There he learned the discipline of prayer and meditation. </p><p>Years later, at the death of his son, Alphonsus, almost 40 by then, sought to join the Jesuits. He was not helped by his poor education. He applied twice before being admitted. For 45 years he served as doorkeeper at the Jesuits’ college in Majorca. When not at his post, he was almost always at prayer, though he often encountered difficulties and temptations. </p><p>His holiness and prayerfulness attracted many to him, including St. Peter Claver, then a Jesuit seminarian. Alphonsus’s life as doorkeeper may have been humdrum, but he caught the attention of poet and fellow-Jesuit Gerard Manley Hopkins, who made him the subject of one of his poems. </p><p>Alphonsus died in 1617. He is the patron saint of Majorca.</p> American Catholic Blog People mess up, and it’s especially hard to watch as our children and other young people go down paths we know are likely to lead to heartbreak. Providing gentle guidance when it’s needed, and love even when that guidance isn’t followed, helps them to start fresh.

 
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