Are you ever too old for Mass?


My dear Dad and Mom, 88 and 86 respectively, were told by their priest that they no longer need to attend Sunday Mass, because of there age. They both use walkers to get about but can go to the bank, post office, etc with assistance. My brother who lives nearby, has offered to pick them up each Sunday, but now they refer to their priest guidance that it is not necessary.

They received Holy Communion monthly by the priest or EMHC, without confession. The time frame is 2 or 3 years.

My question: I know that we are supposed to listen to our priest with all due respect; however, I feel that if able, attending Mass, especially at their age would be a blessing. Are they guilty of any sin by not going to Mass?

God’s blessings to you for a response. Robert


Although the Sunday obligation can be excused for just cause, such as illness or an inability to go to Mass, there is no age at which the Sunday obligation automatically no longer binds. Presumably, your parents’ priest thought them unable to attend Mass for some reason. Perhaps your brother should talk to this priest, assure him that your parents are not too frail to go to Mass with the appropriate assistance, which he is happy to provide, and ask the priest to amend the advice that he gave to your parents. As your parents are trusting in their priest’s advice, they are not sinning because sin requires knowledge and consent, but they should be informed that this priest’s advice perhaps was incomplete.

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