In my last little article I mentioned that full and active participation in the Mass is what the Church teaches we should “aim for above all else.” Of course, that’s easier said than done. To achieve this, we have to fight some might powerful temptations!
One big temptation is that of convenience. It sure would be a lot easier and more convenient if just a few people took care of everything. But in reality the rubrics of the Mass (that’s a fancy Church word which means rules and regulations!) make it mandatory that more people, not less, do things at Mass.
Think about it: if a person is a reader at Mass, he or she is not supposed to also be an usher also; an altar server is not also supposed to be a communion minister; and so on. Even the priest is not supposed to read the Gospel if there is a deacon present. The “ideal” Mass has different persons fulfilling all of the various roles. We deliberately try to include as many people in visible ways as possible. This way our Eucharistic celebration really does resemble a Acooperative effort@ of the whole community.
In the next Morceau I’ll mention still another way in which we emphasize the Mass as a “group project.” Can you guess what it is? See if you can anticipate what I’ll say!