Bringing you the "Good News" of Jesus Christ and His Church While PROMOTING CATHOLIC Apologetic Support groups loyal to the Holy Father and Church's magisterium
Home About
What's New? Resources The Church Family Life Mass and
Ask A Catholic
Knowledge base
AskACatholic Disclaimer
Search the
AskACatholic Database
Donate and
Support our work
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
New Questions
Cool Catholic Videos
About Saints
Disciplines and Practices for distinct Church seasons
Purgatory and Indulgences
About the Holy Mass
About Mary
Searching and Confused
Contemplating becoming a Catholic or Coming home
Homosexual and Gender Issues
Life, Dating, and Family
No Salvation Outside the Church
Sacred Scripture
non-Catholic Cults
Justification and Salvation
The Pope and Papacy
The Sacraments
Relationships and Marriage situations
Specific people, organizations and events
Doctrine and Teachings
Specific Practices
Church Internals
Church History

Nancy Roose wrote:

Hi, guys —

I was raised that offering a Mass for someone or an event was an extra, extra special gift.

Our pastor said that you don't need to go to the rectory, donate and see their name in the bulletin to do this. That you can offer a Mass for anyone, anytime in your own mind and it is just as special and powerful.

I thought that doing it publicly you would have the celebrant, parishioners, woman's prayer group and chain of parishioners and all their prayers going to this person.

  • If there is no difference, than why do we even have Mass intentions?
  • Also why do we storm Heaven with prayers when there is a crisis happening and are told pray the Rosary daily, and pray constantly if it's all the same?

I believe in prayer and know when my mother had cancer and the family prayed together, it shocked the doctors when she lived over 2 more years.

  • If one person's prayer covers everything, why pray?

I do know it is also for personal growth. It doesn't make sense and was a bit of a letdown hearing him say that.



  { What good is it to have a Mass offered for someone when we can offer the petition up in our prayers? }

Eric replied:

Dear Nancy,

Your pastor is full of it. There is no other way to say it. I'm not sure what the best way is to refute this nonsense.

The Eucharist is the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross and has infinite value. Consequently, the Mass (or the Divine Liturgy) is the most powerful prayer we have, far more powerful than any individual's prayer outside that context, because it is united with the Cross. The value comes, not from being public, not from being on a prayer chain, not even, surprisingly enough, from being in the bulletin, but from the life-giving ultimate sacrifice of God the Son on the Cross applied to our requests.

This prayer is so important that in some situations where, for example, "Masses" have been offered with invalid matter, (such as gluten-free hosts), the churches or monasteries were instructed by the Holy See to re-offer each and every Mass intention with valid matter. (This is why they are logged).

  • If this is true, why does it "not make a difference" whether you do it or not?
  • Why, indeed, offer Masses in the first place?
  • What purpose does he think it serves?

In any case, you are right, and he is wrong


Please report any and all typos or grammatical errors.
Suggestions for this web page and the web site can be sent to Mike Humphrey
© 2012 Panoramic Sites
The Early Church Fathers Church Fathers on the Primacy of Peter. The Early Church Fathers on the Catholic Church and the term Catholic. The Early Church Fathers on the importance of the Roman Catholic Church centered in Rome.