Mass attendance - does it still count even though I don't speak Polish?

In the past, I’ve have a hard time getting to mass on Holy Days of obligation. I work full time, have 5 kids and I’m juggling a million things. No excuse I know - which is why I’m trying to make it work. My kids go to mass at their Catholic school so they aren’t my concern - but I want to get there today - on this Feast of the Immaculate Conception. Although there are several mass times, the latest one of the day that works best for me is in Polish, which I don’t speak. Here’s my question - am I obligated to attend in the language I speak/understand when possible, because it IS possible, just very inconvenient time wise, or is the Polish mass OK?

The Polish Mass is fine. If you want, take an Order of Mass to keep track. You can quietly say the responses in English, if you want. You’ll know what’s happening, because you’re familiar with the Mass.

You can even look up an Order of Mass in Polish to print off and take along, but I really think you’ll find you know what is going on.

Going to Mass in another language was always a fun part of family holidays. Once we went to a French/Breton Mass, with just the main ‘parts’ in Breton, like we sometimes do with Latin. That was interesting. The Mass is the Mass is the Mass.

Yay! Was hoping this were true! :slight_smile:

Perfectly okay to attend Mass in any language. Good way to learn some of that language. :slight_smile: Most of the Spanish I know I picked up at Spanish Masses.

When traveling in a foreign country, and supposing you are not fluent in the language, this may be the only way to attend Mass. Sure it counts.

I guess as everyone else responded, the language of the Mass doesn’t matter in this case, or any case, really. You can attend that Polish Mass in peace. :slight_smile:

Personally, I’ve never fully understood the hangup with “understanding” the language of the Mass. Most people who attend the English Mass would probably not be able to fully explain to anyone what every little thing that is said in the Mass means, despite the fact that it’s in English. But of course, I’m one of those “crazy” traditionalists who likes the Latin Mass, so I guess you’d expect to hear this from me. :wink:

I went to Mass in Polish all the time. The responses and the priest’s words during the Liturgy mirror the English Mass. So even I, a Pole, would repeat the responses as I heard them since some words being used were only used at Mass and not at home. Talk to your priest about a Polish/English Missal or an English/Polish one. Trust me. Once you hear the responses of those around you often enough, you will pick up the pronunciation.


If it’s not okay to go to a mass in which you don’t understand the language then how is it ever okay for people to attend the extraordinary form? You can attend the Polish mass:thumbsup:.

Thanks all. I so appreciate your responses. I’m going to attend that Polish mass.

I guess I’m feeling a little guilty which prompted the question because I could attend the language I speak which would allow me to fully participate and understand the homily but instead I’m going to the mass the provides the littlest inconvenience for me. And that’s the crux of it - and why I have such a hard time keeping the HD of obligation. I’m busy - I’m tired - I just don’t feel like going to mass during the week. (Never miss a Sunday) But I’m going to force myself to go today because I want to be obedient. I wish I wanted to go - rather than it feeling like an obligation.

I have so so many obligations. Especially this season of my life with work, bills, young kids, older kids, sick parents… the list goes on and I’m certain many of you could add to my long list with your own obligations.

This might be more appropriate for a new thread but do you think God appreciates our obedience even if no part of us feels like it - or do you think He wants us to be grateful - after all, I’m receiving JESUS in the Eucharist. What sort of person does it make me that I begrudgingly add that to my to-do list?

Sure it does! Countless people attend Latin Masses and outside the rubrics don’t know a word of Latin, and most grossly mispronounce even what they memorized from the Mass.

The point is, they are properly disposed for the worship of God.

And, spiritually, we speak, hear, and understand with ours hearts not our tongues, ears, or intellect!

Peace and all good!

Mass doesn’t have to be in your language. Attendance at the Holy Sacrifice of The Mass is a source of untold Graces, language has nothing to do with it. You know what miracle is happening on that alter and God hears your prayers even if the rest of the congregation are praying in a different langauge.

Actually, the Poles tend to pronounce Latin a little differently, though it’s still recognizable. This lady’s Latin, for example.

Go about 2:50 into it. Also around 6 minutes.

God very much appreciates your obedience when doing something you don’t feel like doing.

Ah, but being able to make responses and understand the homily aren’t the only ways to actively participate in the Mass. You can fully participate at any Mass, no matter which Mass you go to, as long as you do what you can. Attending this Polish Mass may require you to participate differently than at an English Mass, but this does not mean you can’t participate fully!

In regards to your question on reluctant obedience, jaimieleglise’s above response is exactly what I would say. Obviously we all must work towards following God’s various commandments with joy and not reluctantly…but if you do find yourself reluctantly obeying one of His commands, as long as you have that inner desire to have a “change of heart” and to really want to desire to do whatever it is, I would say God will bless you for doing it reluctantly!

So I went to the Polish mass. Didn’t understand a thing the Priest said and even had a hard time responding quietly in English, but the mass was beautiful and every time he said Maria I knew he was speaking of our Blessed Mother and although my head may not have been able to follow along, but my heart definitely did.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of the thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death, Amen.

As long as it wasn’t a PNCC mass.:rolleyes:

Nope - not a chance. The mass was held at a local Roman Catholic Church in my diocese. This particular parish has mostly English masses, but also serves the Polish Catholics in our area.

I’ll admit I didn’t even know what PNCC meant - had to google it.

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