by Taylor Marshall
Saint Gertrude the Great once reported that for each and every Mass that we hear with devotion during our lives, Christ sends a saint to comfort us in death. I was deeply moved the first time I read this.
Intellectually, I know that great value of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass – it is the solemn re-presentation of our Lord Jesus Christ to the Father in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world. It’s the source and summit of the Christian life. However, it is often difficult to remember this amazing truth in the midst of our common distractions during Holy Mass.
Saint Thomas Aquinas taught that with the Holy Eucharist, the five senses fail. Only faith can lift the veil and perceive the reality of Christ’s presence and sacrifice.
I recently came across 10 quotes from the saints about the importance of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
These quotes remind me of the hidden mystery of the Holy Mass. I plan to review them before Mass during Lent. I’d encourage you to do the same if you also struggle with distractions. I may print them out on a card and put them in my missal:
- When the Eucharist is being celebrated, the sanctuary is filled with countless angels who adore the divine victim immolated on the altar. ~ St. John Chrysostom The angels surround and help the priest when he is celebrating Mass. ~ St. Augustine
- If we really understood the Mass, we would die of joy. ~ Saint Jean Vianney
- The celebration of Holy Mass is as valuable as the death of Jesus on the cross. ~ Saint Thomas Aquinas
- Once, St. Teresa was overwhelmed with God’s Goodness and asked Our Lord “How can I thank you?” Our Lord replied, “ATTEND ONE MASS.”
- “My Son so loves those who assist at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass that, if it were necessary He would die for them as many times as they’ve heard Masses.” Our Lady to Blessed Alan.
- When we receive Holy Communion, we experience something extraordinary – a joy, a fragrance, a well-being that thrills the whole body and causes it to exalt. ~ Saint Jean Vianney
- There is nothing so great as the Eucharist. If God had something more precious, He would have given it to us. ~ Saint Jean Vianney
- When we have been to Holy Communion, the balm of love envelops the soul as the flower envelops the bee. ~ Saint Jean Vianney
- It would be easier for the world to survive without the sun than to do without Holy Mass. ~ St. Pio of Pietrelcina
That last quote from Saint Pio is profound. The entire cosmos is sustained by the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass…
Question: How ro we restore a sense of the awe and sanctity to the liturgy? How do we remind ourselves and our brothers and sisters in Christ that the sanctuary is “filled with countless angels” during the consecration? It’s an inspiring reality.