There was a time, not so very long ago, that going to Holy Mass required much preparation. Fasting from all food and drink, except water, began at midnight the night before Mass. Weekly confession was a practice by many, in order to be worthy to receive Holy Eucharist. Dressing in appropriate attire meant wearing our Sunday best, suits for men and dresses for women.
In addition, women veiled their heads in humble submission to the sanctity of the sacred grounds of the sanctuary. There was no casual chatting in the church before Mass because everyone was on their knees praying. When it came time to receive Holy Communion, hands were folded and heads were bowed. The thought of even touching the Eucharist was unthinkable and everyone received the Blessed Sacrament on the tongue.
Although we may not want to return to the strict disciplines of the past, we may want to ask ourselves if we could be doing more to properly dispose ourselves to receive Jesus in the Eucharist. Can we dress more reverently? Are we in need of the Sacrament of Reconciliation before receiving Jesus? Can we arrive at Holy Mass early to pray before the Blessed Sacrament? Can we approach the altar at Communion in a more humble manner?
We are Catholic. We are called to prepare to receive Holy Communion. We must receive Him with a pure heart through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. We should receive Him with a pure mind through thoughtful prayer before Mass. And, we are called to receive Him with a pure body, having fasted for one hour and dressing in modest an appropriate attire. Come to every Holy Mass prepared to receive, with reverence, our Lord in the Holy Eucharist.
Ponder: What changes can you make to better prepare to receive Jesus in Holy Communion?
Reflect: Hebrews 12:28
Pray: Dear Lord, help me to better prepare to receive you worthily at every Holy Mass.
This post was written by Suzy Kelly