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“This Holy Exchange of Gifts: The Sacrifice of the Mass”

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1 “This Holy Exchange of Gifts: The Sacrifice of the Mass”
Blessed Sacrament Parish Mission Scottsdale, Arizona March, 2007

2 Exchange of Gifts What is the most memorable gift you ever received in your life? What makes a gift memorable? Do you remember the gifts you received at Christmas? How is the Mass an exchange of gifts?

3 What Do Some People Say About Mass?
“Mass is boring!” “I don’t get anything out of Mass. It is the same old thing time and time again.” “I have other things to do than go to Mass.” “Only old people go to Mass. It does not offer anything for us who are young people!”

4 Human Priorities What is the most noble action that a human being can perform? Answer: Worship of God! Worship of God is the best way to witness the Mystery of Christ in the Church. This is who we are! Holy God, we praise thy Name.

5 Covenant = Relationship
I must first be in right relationship with God. When I am in right relationship with God, then I can begin to love myself. It is not me who first loved God, but it is God, who first loved me. I must receive His love and I must accept His love. When I accept His love, then and only then, can I begin to love my neighbor, sharing the gift of God’s love.

6 Sacrifice of the Covenant
Jesus Christ is the full revelation of the Sacrifice of the New and Everlasting Covenant. “This is the cup of my blood.” By uniting ourselves with the Sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ, we make our lives a sacrifice to God. We love God and serve Him alone.

7 Love Is God’s Gift to Me:
The gift of love is given by God to me. That love is God’s life. “God is love and whoever abides in love, abides in God and God in him.” (I John 4:16) I must receive that gift of life and love. I must accept that gift of life and love. I must allow the gift of life and love to transform me. I must share the gift of God’s life and love.

8 Sunday vs. “The Weekend”
How do I see the weekend? What do I do on the weekend? Sunday is the first day of the new week, a time to reestablish my covenant with God, to recommit my love to God, my desire to refocus my life in the way of the Lord. How do I do this personally? Communally?

9 The Pre-Exchange of Gifts
Proximate Preparation of the Pre-Exchange: Daily Prayer Scripture Reading Faithfully living the daily duties of our vocation in life Daily repentance of sin and frequent reception of the Sacrament of Reconciliation Immediate Preparation of the Pre-Exchange: Prayerful recollection on the Lord’s Day Arriving early to Mass for private prayer Time to silent self as we enter into the Divine Presence Eucharistic Fast – lex orandi, lex credendi (as we pray, so we believe) What intentions do I bring to this Mass? Who should I remember today? Appropriate attire Embracing the Sabbath rest for the entire day

10 Proper Attire We dress for the occasion. “Sunday best” clothes
Not for show but for worship The celebration of Mass is not about us! It is worship of God! The sea of red at Arrowhead…what does this signify?

11 Preparation Prayer “Priest of God, say this Mass as if it were
your first Mass, your last Mass, your only Mass.” “People of God, celebrate this Mass as if it were

12 How Blessed We Are to Celebrate the Sacrifice of the Mass!
What sacrifice do we bring to the Mass? There are 168 hours in the week. What one hour of our week is more sacred than the hour of Sunday worship of God, where we come as a family of faith to give thanks to Almighty God?

13 Typology of the Exodus - Passover
OLD TESTAMENT Moses Moses, Liberator of Israelites From the bondage of the Egyptians Unblemished Lamb Blood of the Lamb on the doorposts NEW TESTAMENT Jesus, the new Moses Jesus, Liberator of Christians From the bondage of the devil and sin Unblemished Lamb of God Blood of Jesus on the wood of the cross

14 OLD TESTAMENT Three days of darkness before Israelites were freed Crossing of the Red Sea Cloud – day; Fire – night Manna Mosaic Law Old Covenant Passover Meal Promised Land - Jerusalem NEW TESTAMENT Three days in tomb before Jesus resurrected from the dead Baptism Jesus, Holy Spirit Holy Communion Law of Love New Covenant Last Supper, Eucharist Heavenly Jerusalem

Israelites received the law from God through Moses Israelites celebrated the Passover in memory of God’s love for them The Old Covenant was ratified with the blood of animals The Israelites still wait for the promised Redeemer NEW COVENANT We received the law from God through Jesus We celebrate the New Passover, the Eucharist, in memory of God’s love for us in Christ Jesus The New Covenant was ratified with the blood of Jesus We are awaiting the Second Coming of Jesus

16 Four Major Parts of the Sacrifice
Gathering and Introductory Rite Liturgy of the WORD Liturgy of the EUCHARIST Concluding Rite and Sending Forth

17 Participation in the Sacrifice
Full Conscious Active To enter into this type of participation requires the Virtue of Humility. We enter into the House of God – set apart for Divine Use – into the Sanctuary.

18 Prepare Me Lord prepare me to be a sanctuary,
Pure and holy, tried and true. With thanksgiving, I will be a living Sanctuary for You!

19 Opening Hymn and Procession
“He who sings prays twice.” Unity of one voice raised in chorus praising God through song. This is PRAYER. Music is a universal language that can open the heart, disposing one to prayer. Beautiful music is a prayer to God. Procession of the Assembly as a People of God

20 Procession What does the Priest do when he enters the Sanctuary?
The Sanctuary is the threshold of Heaven – we walk to the gate of Heaven when we celebrate the Sacrifice of the Mass! The assembly arises - ascends, (stands), at the beginning in the presence of Christ in the priest.

21 Sign of the Cross In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. What is the gift exchanged in the Sign? Open my mind to learn; open my heart to love; open my arms to serve.

22 Penitential Rite We enter into the Presence of the Divine God by calling to mind our sins. Virtue of humility. Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. This is an incredible gift that we receive. What is the assembly offering as a gift to God? May Almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins and bring us to Everlasting Life. The gift of FORGIVENESS. God gives us forgiveness. We must receive the gift. We must accept the gift. When accepted, the gift of forgiveness of God transforms our heart so that we can begin to share the gift, to be able to forgive as God forgives. This includes the ability to forgive self!

23 Introductory Rite Gifts Exchanged: Meaning of Baptism
The community gathered Greeting in the Lord Forgiveness Mercy Communion of Saints Prayers Peace Thanksgiving Worship Praise Glory

24 Prepare for the Liturgy of the Word
Often, there are distractions in the Church on Sunday during Mass. Proclamation of the Word of God requires practice, effort, prayer, preparation, reverence. Listening to the Word of God requires practice, effort, prayer, preparation, reverence. What does the priest do after proclaiming the Gospel?

25 Word of God What gift does God offer us in the Liturgy of the Word?
What gift do we offer God in the Liturgy of the Word? Invitation - Response

26 Presentation of Gifts What is being collected? What is being offered?
Bread Wine Money My very self! “I urge you therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, your spiritual worship.” (Romans 12:1) Do you see yourself as a gift to the Lord?

27 Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation
Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation. Through your goodness we have this bread to offer, which earth has given and human hands have made. It will become for us the bread of life. Blessed be God forever! What is the exchange of gifts here?

28 Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation
Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation. Through your goodness we have this wine to offer, fruit of the vine and work of human hands. It will become our spiritual drink. Blessed be God forever!

29 What Is the Gift Offered?
The significance of placing your hand in the basket. Watch the little children come forward to place their gifts in the offering. What return shall I make to the Lord, for all the good He has done for me? The little girl in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania. Bishop Jackels: Put your hand in the basket, whether you have anything to give in the offering or not. Say, ‘If I had something to give, I would give it. When I have something to give, I will!” But we have something to place on the altar at each and every Mass – the gift of my very SELF.

30 When supper was ended he took the cup.
Again he gave you thanks and praise, gave the cup to his disciples, and said: Take this, all of you, and drink from it: this is the cup of my blood, the blood of the new and everlasting covenant. It will be shed for you and for all so that sins may be forgiven. Do this in memory of me. COVENANT = The Blood of the Lamb – Jesus Christ

31 Our Father Paternity is different from Fatherhood
God as “Father” mentioned only 14 times in Old Testament God is called, “Father,” 183 times in New Testament Jesus calls God, “Father,” 170 times in the Gospels ABBA = daddy, relationship to child Paternity denotes who is responsible for the birth of a child. Fatherhood describes the relationship of love and intimacy and trust between parent and child. Father in the Judaic mindset contains absolute authority, tenderness, mercy, love, protection. To call God “Abba,” is one of the most outstanding characteristics of the historic Jesus. In Abba, Jesus reveals the heart of our relationship with God. When we pray to the Father, we are in communion with the Father and with the Son. It is through the Spirit by which we enter into this Divine life. OUR Father. This is a “WE” Prayer, not a “ME” Prayer. “Our” does not imply possession but indicates a new relationship with God. If God is OUR Father, then all of us are brothers and sisters in Christ. All discrimination, hatred, racism, prejudice, exploitation is condemned in the first two words of this prayer. The Parable of the Prodigal Son = The Parable of the Forgiving Father Right Relationship is one of the themes of the Kingdom of God. Our Father who art in Heaven is less direct in speaking or addressing God than is the way Luke addresses the beginning of this prayer, where we pray, “Father.” Who art in heaven is not a space or a place, but it is a way of being. Heaven is our homeland, our destiny. By praying these two words, we place ourselves in the presence of God.

32 Our Bread for Tomorrow Give Us Today
Many of Jesus’ most important teachings occur in the context of a meal. OUR Bread: It is never MY Bread alone. This bread must be shared. The bread is more than mere physical nourishment – creates and nurtures human relationships. “Give us” expresses the covenant. We are his and he is ours, and this is for our sake. The parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus should enter our minds when we pray these words. The rich man never even acknowledged the presence of Lazarus at the gate. When Jesus speaks of the parable of the sheep and the goats, he is critical of those who gave no food to the one who was hungry, no drink to the one who thirsted, etc. The sin of omission is highlighted in this petition. “When you failed to do it to one of these least ones, you failed to do it to me.” St. Ignatius of Loyola said, “Pray as if everything depended on God and work as if everything depended on you.” There is a famine on earth, “not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord.” (Amos 8:11) There is an obvious tie in this petition to the Sacrament of the Eucharist… the Bread of Life. Remember also that Jesus shared meals with the sinners and the outcast, the marginalized, the forgotten, the Lazaruses of this world.

33 Forgiveness To forgive, we must be at peace.
When we love like Abba, we must forgive, there is no option here. How to ask for forgiveness The placement of The Lord’s Prayer within the celebration of Mass is important – a sign of unity and peace. The disciple of Christ becomes transfigured to Christ when the disciple forgives even his enemy. This is a radical teaching of Christianity. Without forgiveness, we do not love as Christ loves. We are called to love not only those who love us, but to love those who do not love us. The grace necessary for us to love in this way comes from God. This is part of this petition in The Lord’s Prayer, that we may forgive others as God forgives us. The proper gesture of the prayer in the celebration of Mass. It is a “vertical” prayer and not a “horizontal” one.

34 September 11, 2001 We remember well the sights of that horrific day.
But do we remember the sounds of that day? What was the common message communicated from those about to die? The need for forgiveness lies in the heart of the being God created us to be. Forgiveness is not the same as forgetting!

35 St. Augustine “Run through all the words of the holy prayers in Scripture, and I do not think that you will find anything in them that is not contained and included in the Lord’s Prayer.”

36 St. Thomas Aquinas “The Lord’s Prayer is the most perfect of prayers…In it we ask, not only for all of the things we can rightly desire, but also in the sequence that that they should be desired. This prayer not only teaches us to ask for things, but also in the order we should desire them.”

37 Let us offer each other the sign of peace.
Lord Jesus Christ, you said to your apostles: I leave you peace, my peace I give you. Look not on our sins, but on the faith of your Church, and grant us the peace and unity of your kingdom where you live for ever and ever. Let us offer each other the sign of peace. In the early Church, there was the Kiss of Peace. The story of the young boy at St. Michael’s Church last Sunday. He truly gave a gift to all of the assembly of teaching the meaning of the Sign of Peace!

38 Lamb of God Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world: have mercy on us. Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world: grant us peace. “Lord I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and I shall be healed.”

39 “Happy Are Those Who Are Called to His Supper”
“Lord, I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word, and I shall be healed.” Invitation – Response Gift Given. Gift Received. Gift Accepted. Gift Transforms. Gift Shared.

40 Holy Communion Communion = Common + Union
The ______________is the center of the life of the Church. The heart of the Mass is the ____________. The consummation of the Mass occurs in _______________. The Eucharist Consecration Holy Communion

41 Pope Benedict XVI “Union with Christ is also union with all those to whom he gives himself. I cannot possess Christ just for myself; I can belong to him only in union with all those who have become, or will become, his own. Communion draws me out of myself towards him, and thus also towards unity with all Christians. We become “one body,” completely joined in a single existence. Love of God and love of neighbor are now truly united: God incarnate draws us all to himself.” Deus Caritas Est, n. 14

42 The Eucharist “The Eucharist is the source and summit of the Christian life.” Lumen Gentium, n. 11 We should strive to receive the Eucharist Regularly Gratefully Worthily

43 Refraining from Receiving
If we are in mortal sin, we should not receive Holy Communion until we are reconciled to the Body of Christ through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. “While we remain members of the body of Christ and continue to be part of the Catholic Church, we have become lifeless or dead members. We no longer share in the common bond of the divine life of the Holy Spirit.” 1 Corinthians 11:27

44 Sign of the Cross Final Blessing
Sent forth to witness as a member of Christ’s Body, nourished by the gifts received in the Sacrifice, strengthened by the gifts exchanged, committed to live the Faith professed. We go forth in the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. We go forth to be who we are! We began the prayer of the Sacrifice in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. We end the prayer of the Sacrifice in the same way. The priest acting in persona Christi kissed the Altar of Sacrifice at the beginning. The priest repeats this action at the end. The People of God sign themselves with the cross as a commitment of their covenant to join themselves with the Sacrificial Lamb of God. They do this at the beginning and at the end of the Prayer of the Mass.

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