A few questions about the Mass


Jesus already Sacrificed Himself on Calvary. He already Sacrificed Himself for our sins.

I know we are doing this in memorial/rememberance of Him and His Perfect Sacrifice, but I have a few questions to help me better understand my Catholic faith:

  1. Is the Mass a sacrifice? (Jesus already did this on the Cross)

  2. What does it mean when we take/consume the Body and Blood during the Mass?


There is chronos time…time that passes and moves forward.
Then there is kairos time. God’s time. Time that is at once, past, present, and future. The Mass happens in kairos time. We participate in the sacrifice, we offer gifts, we praise God, we give thanks, we seek forgiveness, and we participate in that Passover meal that was transformed by the Lamb of God, Jesus Himself, the night before He died.
The Mass is an eternal sacrifice, offered for many, and it is the most intimate way to be united with Christ Himself when we meet Him at the table.


The Sacrifice of the Mass


I am not sure what your second question is, but here is the Catechism on the Eucharist:


But Jesus is not re-sacrificed, correct? (sorry if this is a silly question)

  1. The sacrifice of the Mass is the sacrifice of Calvary. What is repeated is the *offering *of the Victim, and fresh graces flow from that offering each time it is made. True, the *immolation *of the Victim happened once for all time, on the cross; in the Mass the immolation is mystical, consisting of Christ’s willingness to die for us, and in the separate consecration of his body and blood (signifying death). For more on this see Trent, Session 22.

  2. Receiving Christ’s body and blood is such a profound mystery with so many implications, it cannot be covered in a short answer. I can say briefly what it is not. We do *not *digest Christ’s body and blood in such a manner that they physically break down in our digestive system. His body and blood are really there in our bodies, but sacramentally. What breaks down is the *accidents *(physical properties) of bread and wine, and when that happens the Real Presence as such departs (but we continue to enjoy the indwelling of the Trinity, if we are in a state of grace). For more on this see Trent, Session 13.


You are correct that Jesus is not re-sacrificed at every Mass. Jesus died once and for all. Rather, the one sacrifice at Calvary is made present at each Mass.


there are no silly questions.
Not “re-sacrificed” in the way you mean it.
But we are present at the sacrifice.
Read this, it might be helpful.



This should answer some of your concerns.



You’re right. He’s not re-sacrificed at every Mass. Actually, this is a very common misconception. On the contrary - we are instead transported, in a way, to be there at His One Sacrifice. The Gospel of John is the best way to really understand our view of what happens at the Mass - St. John the apostle and evangelist describes the Last Supper, Crucifixion, and Resurrection as one event - one event that transcends time and space. In the Mass, specifically in the Liturgy of the Eucharist, we do not simply re-enact the Lord’s Supper. We actually are there - at the same table that Jesus ate with the Twelve, at the foot of the cross, and at the empty tomb - all at the same time. So, no, Jesus is not re-sacrificed - but what we experience is a true sacrifice, because we ourselves are witnesses to Jesus’s One True Sacrifice.


Think this is a really beautiful post. Thank you and God bless you :slight_smile:


In the Old Testament, the Jews sometimes offered a type of unbloody sacrifice called a wave or elevated offering, in which the thing or person offered to God was not destroyed or killed but merely waved or elevated alive before God. The entire of tribe of Levi was sacrificed in this way, offered alive to God in Numbers 8:5-22.

As I see it, at Mass, the risen Lord Jesus Christ is also sacrificed in this way, waved or elevated alive before God. It is a re-presentation of his sacrifice on the cross because the risen Lord Jesus still bears the wounds of his crucifixion in his flesh. (John 20:27)


Cool. You had me crack my old Biblical Greek Primer, which I need to do more often it seems. :):slight_smile:


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.