[quote="Paul1973, post:8, topic:288859"]
Right now Im in shock and I have a lot of deep thinking to do. I have not been to Church for many years and consider myself a great sinner but I believe in God's great mercy and I know my love for Him is real. I was afraid to ask the question, afraid that my sister was right but if the Church teaches it is a sin then I accept that this is the truth. I have many questions I know I have to ask and but Im afraid of the answers Im going to get. Thank you all for answering this question.
One thing to keep in mind is that the requirement to attend Mass is not for God's benefit. He's not sitting there like some maiden aunt, upset because nobody came to her tea party.
It's required because it is very much easier to stop living a life based on sin (and/or to avoid starting or returning to such a life) if you go to Mass. It's not like He's asking much--just one hour a week to join with your brothers and sisters to watch a miracle. One hour a week to connect with the Truth (God) and also truth--that God is all good, and all-loving, and worthy of worship.
Some people, I know, don't need to be required to go to Mass. They'll go anyway. But I know that when I was attending Protestant churches, I could make excuses for myself for missing church. By the end, I was mostly only going to church about once a month. I love Mass, and unlike when I was a child, I don't find it boring any more because I understand it better. But still, I have no doubt, if Mass attendance weren't required, laziness would win out sometimes. And once that starts, it can only snowball. I miss Mass once because I was up late and very tired in the morning. The next week, I've missed the grace of going for a week, and it takes less for me to stay at home.
So I'm really grateful that it is required. I can't try to fool myself that it doesn't matter much. I can't make excuses. If I decide not to go to Mass, I have to know that I am deliberately deciding to commit a mortal sin. I haven't missed Sunday Mass since I came back to the Church (except for illness, and once for weather).
You can do it, too. And the longer you do it, the easier it gets. :)
God bless you!