The Gathering

Do we bring “our best selves” each week? Do we begin at home in our preparations for this sacred gathering? Below is a reflection of "The Gathering Rite."

Families and the Eucharist

Good beginnings are important. On a school day we have a better experience if we have our books and homework, if we eat a good breakfast and if we have had plenty of sleep. When we celebrate Mass, a good beginning is also necessary.

How can you get ready for the Mass at home? Can you get your clothes ready before you go to bed? Can you read the Gospel before you come to Mass? Can you say a prayer to help you think about God before you come into the church? Can you be kind to family members who come with you to church? Can you greet other people coming into church with you?

God calls us to come to Mass. People come from surrounding streets and towns. They come by foot, bicycle, car, truck and van. We are young and old, tall and short. We all come together to form a community, to pray to God and to be changed into beMer people. God gathers us from all corners of his Creation.

Draw a picture of the people who come with you to Mass. Keep your picture in a place that it will remind you to prepare for Sunday Mass.

Did you know?

The Book of Gospels is carried in the entrance procession and is shown to the people during the sung Gospel Acclamation because “Christ himself speaks when the scriptures are proclaimed in the Church” (Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy #7).

Copyright © 2008, World Library Publications, the music and liturgy division of J.S. Paluch Co., Inc. Used with permission.

The priest is enabled to act in persona Christi, in the person of Christ, in the celebration of the Eucharist. The priest is the last to enter the celebration, for when he “joins the celebrating community, the Church, the Body of the risen Lord,

Copyright © 2008, World Library Publications, the music and liturgy division of J.S. Paluch Co., Inc. Used with permission.

The song is the first activity of the community gathered in Christ, who is present when the Church prays and sings (Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy #7). “If singing is a cross to you, take it up, and you will find it a blessing. Sing lustily and with a good courage” (Preface to Sacred Melody, John Wesley).

Copyright © 2008, World Library Publications, the music and liturgy division of J.S. Paluch Co., Inc. Used with permission.

”The most basic Christian gesture in prayer is and always will be the sign of the Cross. It is a way of confessing Christ crucified with one’s very body” (Pope Benedict XVI). It is also a statement of belief. From the very beginning of Mass we pray in the awareness of the cross of Christ, of the saving sacrifice it represents, and of our own share in that sacrifice through baptism. (Believe Celebrate Life The Eucharist)

Copyright © 2008, World Library Publications, the music and liturgy division of J.S. Paluch Co., Inc. Used with permission.

The Lord be with you” is a simple formula that expresses the foundational mystery of the Mass: that Christ is with us and makes us one. The greeting occurs four (4) times during the Mass – always before an important part of the liturgy.

Copyright © 2008, World Library Publications, the music and liturgy division of J.S. Paluch Co., Inc. Used with permission.

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More information on the Gathering Rite can be found here:
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or you can download the PDF