This post is part of a series on Getting the Most Out of Mass: tips to best dispose yourself to receive graces available during Mass (this will be specifically about Sunday Mass, but some of these ideas will also apply to daily Mass). We’re in the section on the Introductory Rites.
(This part of the Mass is optional, so you might not experience it at your parish.)
The priest (or a deacon or lay minister) might optionally give a short introduction to the Mass of the day.1
Each Mass tends to have a theme that runs through the readings and prayers. The introduction can help connect those dots for people to help them enter more deeply into the Mass and better understand the reason why the specific readings and prayers were chosen for that day.
Throughout the year, the Church has different seasons (“liturgical” seasons). The introduction can help situate the theme of the Mass within the greater context of the liturgical season.
As we discussed last time, the Church wants us to be well versed in Holy Scripture. She wants it to pervade our lives. Giving people an introduction can get people thinking about the readings, allow them to understand them more fully, and whet their appetites to learn more.
If your parish happens to introduce the Mass try to listen for what might help you understand the reading and/or prayers more fully. Try to keep that information fresh in your mind as you go through the parts of the Mass that were explained (most commonly the readings).
Use the information shared as a springboard to go further.
- What consequences can be drawn from what was shared?
- How is God calling me to change my life?
- In what way does this shed new or better light on God and/or His Church?
- What further study could I do to learn more about what was shared?
What About You?
- Has there ever been an introduction to the Mass that really helped you enter more fully into the Mass?
- In what ways have you been able to use the introduction at Mass to help you enter more fully into the readings and prayers?