Midnight Mass for a Non-Catholic


#1

I’m an active protestant church goer,but have in my recent past felt drawn devotionally toward more Catholic practices (the rosary, more observance of the Liturgical Calendar, etc.). This year, I’m considering going to the local Catholic church’s Midnight Mass. Would it be appropriate for me to attend? I know I would not be taking the Eucharist, and I understand this. I was just wondering if there would be any issue with attending, participating in the rest of the service.

Thanks for the input. Merry Christmas everyone. :slight_smile:

In Christ,
Robert


#2

There's absolutely nothing wrong with attending Mass. My only warning would be that if you then attend a regular Sunday Mass later, don't expect it to be as magnificent as midnight Mass for Christmas. But go, pray, and take it all in.


#3

Definitely go. I just came into the Church last Easter. Prior to that I attended Mass for two years and of course had to go through RCIA. I even did an exchange program with a friend in college who is now in seminary becoming a Priest. I would go to mass with him one week and then he would go to my protestant service. It allowed him to better minister to me. You will learn much about the mass simply by being present. Also, if you come to the conclusion or are already at the point where you believe in transubstantiation or that that bread and wine are truly the body and blood of Christ, then only in a mass can you sit in the true presence of the living Christ. That is the best part of mass, aside from taking the Eucharist itself. Praying for your journey into the Church.

-Rob


#4

Robert,

By all means, go and see for yourself! Pray that God will open your heart to His will and I’m sure it will be a fruitful experience.


#5

Yes! Go and see for yourself! Midnight Christmas Mass is the second most beautiful mass of the year, second only to the Easter vigil in my opinion. Just make sure you get there half an hour early at the absolute minimum, because it will be very crowded. I recommend an hour to 45 minutes early if you want to be assured of a seat in the main church (as opposed to the vestibule {lobby}, chapel, community room, and/or gym going by the order they fill up at my parish). Normal Sunday masses wont be as crowded, but you get a lot of people traveling to be with family at Christmas and Easter who aren’t going to be in their normal parish as well as unfortunately, a lot of people who only go to mass at Christmas and Easter.


#6

During Holy Communion, you may say this prayer to bring him spiritually to you in a speial way:

“Dear Jesus,
I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul.
Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally,
come at least spiritually into my heart, and be with me now at this moment.
I embrace You as if You were already present and unite myself wholly to You.
Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen”

Have a holy and blessed Christmas.


#7

Oh! Good post. I would have not remembered to say that....


#8

[quote="RobFulton, post:1, topic:308916"]
I'm an active protestant church goer,but have in my recent past felt drawn devotionally toward more Catholic practices (the rosary, more observance of the Liturgical Calendar, etc.). This year, I'm considering going to the local Catholic church's Midnight Mass. Would it be appropriate for me to attend? I know I would not be taking the Eucharist, and I understand this. I was just wondering if there would be any issue with attending, participating in the rest of the service.

Thanks for the input. Merry Christmas everyone. :)

In Christ,
Robert

[/quote]

you are absolutely always welcome to attend any Mass! Get there early because it will be crowded. (half hour or more).


#9

i would say that you are welcome any time fro sure at a catholic mass.especially at Christmas.

i do pray that you make the right choice in jumping on board.be strong and God bless you..

:thumbsup:


#10

As all the others have said, "yes, by all means go". I'll offer a prayer for you today.


#11

I agree with everyone, please attend! You won’t be the only visitor at Midnight Mass :))
Mary.


#12

Everyone has already given you the best advice: GET THERE EARLY. If you think you are leaving too early, leave 10 mins earlier. Nothing will bum out your expirence like standing in the back and looking at the backs of heads for 90mins. If Mass really starts at midnight, then try and take a nap that afternoon. Mass is wonderful, but it's still the middle of the night. Enjoy, it will be awesome! :)


#13

Depending on the church you choose, there is a good chance that before Mass there will be a half an hour of a Choir singing. I absolutely second early, early, early.

Also, if you have never opened a Missalette (the book in the pew), The Mass and responses are laid out in the book. I find not many people know how to use it back to front, but you can follow everything except the prayers of intentions in the book.

Some places don't have the readings in the book though. I find that to be a bummer, but I think they see it as "Jesus didn't use a book to tell the stories, so you can listen too."


#14

Nothing wrong. There are many baptised Catholics who will be attending whose practice of their religion falls far short of your own. I’m sure anyone would agree that your attendance would be very welcome


#15

Have a wonderful time!


#16

Midnight Christmas Mass is the second most beautiful mass of the year, second only to the Easter vigil in my opinion.

This. The Christmas midnight Mass is my second-favorite liturgy each year (and it’s a closeCLOSE second to the Easter Vigil). Go and enjoy yourself!


#17

If you have a smartphone, then I recommend the free Universalis “RC calendar” app or similar, as it has the Order of Mass in a more accessible form than most missals (and you won’t have to worry about whether or not you’ll find a missal in the church). Otherwise, you might want to print off an “Order of Mass” leaflet to take with you, such as one of these: romanmissal.org.uk/Home/Texts/Order-of-Mass-leaflets

Or, if you don’t want to overload yourself and intend to just drink everything in, you still might want to prepare by looking over the Order of Mass in the next couple of days, so that you understand a little better what is going on. I still think this is one of the best presentations of the basic texts, although we now use a slightly different translation of the Latin (more literal), so don’t rely on it for the exact wording: catholic-resources.org/ChurchDocs/Mass.htm

Everything else has been said, I think? Apart from Communion, you know you can choose what to join in with? The only thing that’s usually difficult to avoid joining in with is the ‘Sign of Peace’, when everyone immediately adjacent to you will want to shake your hand and say “Peace be with you”.

Merry Christmas, and Maranatha!


#18

Go, go, go-- and enjoy, enjoy, enjoy this beautiful and special liturgical celebration!

A Jewish friend came to Midnight Mass with me one year a long time ago because she had heard so much about how beautiful it was. Afterwards, she was so moved that she began her journey towards Christianity. Last I heard, she was baptised (not sure what denomination) and was looking into RCIA. Not sure if she ever followed through as we lost touch, but at least it was "on her radar"... and to think that her first time at Midnight Mass moved her so much, and sparked her journey!

(Of course, your mileage may vary!)


#19

Do check out the time for Midnight Mass at the parish you will be attending. In our parish, “Midnight” Mass has been earlier every year. This year it’s at 9 pm. :shrug:

On the other hand, our priest is very good about waiting until it’s dark for the Easter Vigil liturgy to start. :thumbsup:


#20

=RobFulton;10155040]I’m an active protestant church goer,but have in my recent past felt drawn devotionally toward more Catholic practices (the rosary, more observance of the Liturgical Calendar, etc.). This year, I’m considering going to the local Catholic church’s Midnight Mass. Would it be appropriate for me to attend? I know I would not be taking the Eucharist, and I understand this. I was just wondering if there would be any issue with attending, participating in the rest of the service.

Thanks for the input. Merry Christmas everyone. :slight_smile:

In Christ,
Robert

NO PROBLEM Robert!

I suggest you stay towards the rear of the church and when others KNEEL you sit. Do not present yourself for Holy Communion:) This way you’ll see what to do. ENJOY And let us know how it went:)

God Bless you Robert;
MERRY CHRISTMAS,

Pat/PJM


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