In our parish I have heard a couple of teachers telling our students that at Holy Mass, during the Offertory and Eucharistic Prayer, we “offer up our sins.” Is anyone else familiar with this description of our interior process at Holy Mass?
Our CRE cites his sources for this description as his Diaconate Formation classes and a previous teacher here who has a Masters degree in Theology.
I would really like to know if anyone can cite a serious source (theologian, Doctor, Father of the Church, Scriptural reference, etc) that supports the idea of offering our sins to God.
I personally think that this construct: "we offer up our sins" is confusing to the students, and that a better description would be to say we offer our selves, our sufferings, and our wills along with the bread, wine, and resources (collection), adding that we offer our contrition for our sins during the Penitential Rite earlier, and when we offer our selves and wills we are offering something that is sinful and imperfect, but is the best that we have, rather than the worst thing about us, our sins. But I would be happy to discover that I am wrong and this idea: "we should offer up our sins to God" is a common one within the Catholic Church. I think the distinction is important because I do try to teach my catechism class students that Active Participation is an interior process of our intellects and hearts during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, and that at specific times of the Liturgy we are doing specific things. That the Eucharistic Prayer is words, and we are ultimately offering the Word as we participate in Christ's sacrifice.