Jesus asks his disciples this weekend the question: ‘Who do people say that I am?’ We are disciples, so what is our response? How do we describe Jesus to someone who doesn’t know him? Do we know him personally and well enough to share something about the man who died for us?
As we are quickly getting back into the routine of things with school, schedules and things starting up again, it is an important question for us to ponder. One thing I hope everyone knows about Jesus is that he wants to hear from us in prayer. Jesus is a person we can always go to and lay our burdens, joys, sorrows, delights, etc. before. Jesus wants it all, and take it from me, he can even handle yelling, screaming and rage. I honestly find my personal conversations with Jesus the best opportunity to let God know where I’m at, by talking to his Son. Give it a try sometime. Trust me, you’ll feel great after a conversation with Jesus.
I want to share with you, two specific ways to know Jesus and offer prayers.
- Mass Intentions – Mass is the highest form of prayer we have as Catholics. A Mass intention is an opportunity to have the offering of the Mass for a loved one, deceased or living in which the priest’s intention at Mass is for that specific person or request. The intention is offered during the Mass to Jesus himself on the altar and is a beautiful way to pray. Every Mass has a specific prayer intention. If you would like to request a Mass intention, please contact the parish office. As of today, we are VERY LOW on Mass intentions. Seeing that this is the highest form of prayer, this is a tad concerning.
- At the beginning of every Mass there is an opportunity for each person in church to pray for an intention. After the opening of mass, upon conclusion of the Penitential Rite/Gloria the priest will sing/say; Let us pray. After the ‘Let us Pray’, there is a moment of silence in which to offer personal intentions. This is an opportunity for ALL to offer their personal intentions for the celebration of Mass. The priest then prays the ‘collect’ (opening prayer) to Mass, in which the priest collects all of the congregation’s prayers and offers them to God. (That is why his hands are raised to heaven) Each Mass we attend, we can offer an intention of prayer during that mass, and this is done at the opening of Mass, instead of at the Universal Prayers (Prayers of the Faithful/General Intercessions). Beginning next week, we will intentionally add more silence to the moment after ‘Let us pray’ at the beginning of Mass before the priest prays, so that all of us have an opportunity to offer an intention. We will also eliminate, ‘for our personal needs and intentions’ that are mentioned in the prayer of the faithful as this is the wrong time to offer a true intention and prayer for Mass.
I invite all of us to take the opportunity to bring our prayers to Jesus, and get to know him better, so that we can tell others who this Jesus is for us!