I have been trying to make daily Mass for the past three weeks or so (although I can’t right now because our family car situation is a little funky) and so I thought I would share five habits that I have which intensify my focus and help me get more out of every Mass. Here they are:
1. Pick a Saint quote to repeat to yourself at the consecration, the climax of the Mass. Currently the one I say is from Saint Francis of Assisi: “Man should tremble, the world should vibrate, all heaven should be deeply moved when the Son of God appears at the altar in the hands of the priest.”
2. If you find yourself zoning out or having trouble paying attention, try to hone in on the priest’s words and pray the words of the Mass along with him.
3. At the Sign of Peace, think about and pray for someone who could use peace in his or her life, whether it be about a job, a relationship, a health issue, etc.
4. Pray for the Holy Souls in Purgatory. If your prayers are the reason they are released into Heaven, then they will literally be eternally grateful to you and will be formidable heavenly advocates on your behalf. A good modus operandi for doing this is praying for any family members that may be there, or the soul who is the absolute closest to Heaven, or the soul who is the absolute farthest away. It’s probably better to have a laser-like focus on one soul—your prayer could go something like this…
Dear Heavenly Father, I offer You all of my sufferings and afflictions at this present moment in union with the Passion of Your Son in order that the soul in Purgatory who is the absolute closest to Heaven will finally be released and have eternal rest. Amen.
5. Stay for ten to fifteen minutes after Mass and do nothing but give praise and thanks to God. Don’t ask Him for anything. Ponder the fact that the Way, the Truth, and the Life just humbled Himself enough to be received into your sinful, imperfect self. Reflect on what ‘joy eternal’ really means—that is, your undeserved inheritance as a child of the Omnibenevolent Father. Be filled with the Holy Spirit.
At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do.” (Luke 10:21)