Before I deal with anything else in the “Liturgy of the Word” (you know, the first part of the Mass), I want to say something about the opposite of “words.” To use another term, about silence.
For somebody as talkative as me, silence isn’t easy. And today’s world, with all of its noise – the buzz of conversation, traffic noise, annoying TV commercials, screaming children, blustering politicians, etc. – “quiet time” is very, very difficult to find. But silence remains essential for a proper Christian spiritual life. A follower of Christ Jesus simply has to reflect in stillness and peacefulness about Him, and His message, and His will. Since you can’t be a good Christian by accident, we need to find the time in which to make that decision to follow the Lord. It won’t happen otherwise.
Even our Mass, then, with all of its wordiness, songs, and ceremony has to include moments of silence and reflectiveness. Personally, I also try to include silent time before Mass, when I look over the readings, focus my prayer intentions, and make sure my attention is on God and not something less. You will be amazed at how much difference – a good difference! – this will make if you try it!