So, what’s the big deal about the Catholic Mass anyway? If you’re not sure about that, Internet video is here to help.
But first, a few words from St. Francis of Assisi.
Forget the things St. Francis is said to have said, which he didn’t say (like “Preach always…” and the “Peace Prayer”), here’s something he actually said (or actually wrote), from the Vatican Website:
And as [Jesus] appeared to the Apostles in true flesh, so now also He shows Himself to us in the sacred bread. And as they by their bodily sight saw only His flesh, yet contemplating Him with the eyes of the spirit believed Him to be very God, so we also, as we see our bodily eyes the bread and wine, are to see and firmly believe that it is His most holy body and blood living and true. And in this way the Lord is always with His faithful, as He Himself says: Behold I am with you until the end of the world (Mt 28,20).
That’s the supernatural event happening in every Catholic Mass, but it’s easy to lose sight of that — especially if you either take Mass for granted or just don’t know much about what’s going on.
Luckily, there are Web resources out there to help — some more engaging than others.
For example, there’s this video from CatholicChicago, which is very informative but not exactly cinematic:
Then there’s this short video from Ascension Press’ “Altaration” series featuring former actor Father Mike Schmitz, which really captures the drama:
Or, where Father Mike takes a more one-on-one approach, in his usual video format:
Los Angeles’ Bishop Robert Barron, known for his “Catholicism” series and much more, has undertaken a new series on the Mass. It is a subject he’s dealt with before, such as in this video from November 2017:
But now he’s taken it to the next level, with an upcoming video series called, unsurprisingly, “The Mass.”
Much of it was filmed at a church in his new hometown of Santa Barbara, Calif. (he’s the auxiliary bishop of the Santa Barbara region of the huge Archdiocese of Los Angeles). The six-episode series launches June. 12.
Episode 1: A Privileged Encounter: The Closest Thing to Heaven on Earth
Episode 2: Called Out of the World: The Introductory Rites
Episode 3: God Speaks Our Story: The Scripture Readings
Episode 4: Responding to Our God: Homily, Creed and Prayer of the Faithful
Episode 5: Preparing for Sacrifice: Offertory and Eucharistic Prayer
Episode 6: The Real Presence Creates Communion: Transubstantiation and Transformation
And, last but not least, here’s a video from recent convert to Catholicism (from Church of Christ), 23-year-old YouTuber Lizzie Reezay, a k a LizziesAnswers, whose bubbling-over enthusiasm for the Faith is infectious.
Filmed just prior to her entering the Church this past Easter Vigil, here’s what Lizzie loves about the Mass:
BTW, Family Theater Productions’ own Web series, “Catholic Central,” is working an episode about the Mass, so keep your eyes glued to CatholicCentral.com for when that happens.
In the meantime, here’s our latest effort, a short video on Pentecost (which is this Sunday!).
Hope to see you all at Mass! (Even if you’re not Catholic, we’re always happy to have visitors; here’s a useful guide on Mass etiquette for non-Catholics.)
Image: Word on Fire; Ascension Presents; LizziesAnswers (YouTube screenshot)