The Elements of the Catholic Mass
Episode 26 • 4m 6s
The altar is the central feature of every Catholic church. It is the most significant element in the church building. (It is even more significant than the tabernacle, since without altar, there is no reserved Blessed Sacrament.) The altar is the focal point of every liturgical celebration. The Church teaches us that Christ himself is the Victim; Christ is the Priest; Christ is the Altar of Sacrifice.
Up Next in Opening Up the Treasures of the Mass
My Sacrifice and Yours
At the end of the Preparation of the Offerings, the priest says to the people: "Pray, brothers and sisters, that my sacrifice and yours (meum ac vestrum sacrificium) may be acceptable to God the Almighty Father." There are not two sacrifices. Rather, we share in the singular sacrifice of Christ, ...
The Mystery of Faith
During Mass, immediately after the consecration of the Bread and Wine, the priest, with the Eucharist on the altar in front of him says, "The mystery of faith." Why is this done? What does it mean?
The Bow Before Receiving Holy Communion
People often ask, "What is the proper gesture before receiving Holy Communion?" The answer is actually very clear and simple. It can be found in the General Instruction of The Roman Missal at paragraph 160. The communicant makes a bow of the head before receiving the Body of the Lord and before r...