Tuesday, July 31, 2018

July 29th, 2018 - 17th Sunday of OT - Preparation of the Gifts - Mass Series #6

Click on this Link to Listen to the Homily:  July 29th, 2018 - 17th Sunday of OT - Preparation of the Gifts - Mass Series #6  or use the player below.



It took me a few times of going to Mass before I started to know what to expect.  In this homily I talk about the Preparation of the Gifts at Mass and my own experience of it as I grew in the faith.


Readings:  2 KGS 4:42-44; PS 145:10-11, 15-16, 17-18; EPH 4:1-6; JN 6:1-15


Gifts of Bread and Wine prepared for Mass

This homily was the 6th in the series.  Click on the links below for the other homilies.
June 10th, 2018 - 10th Sunday of OT - When I Returned to Mass in College - Mass Series #3
July 1st, 2018 - 13th Sunday of OT - The Beginning of Mass - Mass Series #4
July 22, 2018 - 16th Sunday of OT - Big Picture View of the Parts of the Mass - Mass Series #5

The information below is not the homily, but is a  related bulletin article.


Preparation of the Gifts (On Sundays)
At the beginning of the Liturgy of the Eucharist, the altar is being set with the sacred linens and vessels by the priest or deacon, assisted by the servers.  As the altar is prepared in the sanctuary for the gifts of bread and wine, we are to prepare the altar of our hearts for our spiritual offering. 
Also, during this time there is a collection taken up, where we give a portion of our possessions representing the gift of our whole selves to God.   Offering a portion of one’s own possessions to God is seen throughout Sacred Scripture such as by Abel the Just, Abraham our father in faith, and the high priest Melchizedek. 
A monetary donation during the collection fulfills the symbolic gesture in preparation for making the spiritual gift of oneself and Christ within us to God the Father during the Eucharistic Prayer.  Monetary donations also indicate and strengthen having God as our God and not having money as our god.  Lastly, they are used to cover the expenses of the parish enabling us to come together and worship God.
Bread, wine, and the collection are brought in procession by members of the congregation to the priest.  They represent all of the faithful, and the gifts they bring represent all that we are offering to God at this Mass.  Giving the gifts to the priest represent the request of the people for the priest to offer all of these things to God on behalf of all of us. 
The priest and deacon (if present) pray certain prayers quietly as the offertory hymn is sung.  Then, the priest washes his hands asking God to cleanse him of his sins. 
The priest asks the people to pray “that my sacrifice and yours may be acceptable to God, the almighty Father.”  The people respond, with prayer asking that God accept the sacrifice and listing the reasons for the sacrifice: for His glory, for us, and for the Church.
The Preparation of the Gifts conclude with the Prayer Over the Offerings, which like the Collect, is specific for the celebration of the day.

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