Taking a friend to Mass


#1

I started a thread on this before, but the thread got completely derailed and now it has disappeared. So, I will ask the question again.

A friend of mine was baptized Catholic and received her First Communion. She has not been to Mass in years, though.

Well, I’m taking her to Mass this Sunday. What should I tell her?


#2

Not to take communion until she goes to confession for being away from the church. She can go up for a blessing.
JIll


#3

Tell her to cover her head in church.

(Talk about derailing a thread:D)


#4

This.


#5

Thats debatable.


#6

It’s not so much what you say (although you should gently remind about not taking the Eucharist, as others have mentioned), but spend a lot of time in prayer beforehand that your friend will have a hunger to return to the full practice of the sacraments. Pray that she will discern Jesus in the Eucharist and and will have the courage to go to Confession and return to Mass.

I think prayer will do more than anything. But you might want to refrain from receiving the Eucharist as well, so that she doesn’t feel alone and ostracized for not going. I’ve done that when going to Mass with non-Catholics. It would probably be even more helpful in the case of a non-practicing Catholic.

–Jen


#7

I’m not sure where this “no going up for a blessing” stuff is coming from, who is making it up but all of the priests in our parish actually encourage it. Whenever I have friends and family weekending at my house, I take them to mass with me. I want for them to feel welcome and comfortable. By telling them to stay in their seats I don’t think is very welcoming. Who knows where and when we may be planting a seed.
This person the op talks of, is lapsed Catholic. Wouldn’t we want to welcome this person and maybe even plant a little seed? I think so. So yes, encourage this friend to receive a blessing. Who knows what my come of it!


#8

I suppose I’ll be guilty of derailing the thread, but I’m pretty sure that this blessing business is supposed to be discouraged, like holding hands during the Our Father is supposed to be discouraged.

Does anyone here know where authoritative info on this can be found?


#9

Why??? :mad:


#10

Because we don’t have to. I thought it was funny - & I do cover at Mass! But because I want to, not because I have to.


#11

It is? I thought anyone could be blessed.Why not?

Although yes going to confession first would be better.

PAX+


#12

Sometimes it is discouraged, but I found this excellent discussion about it:

ewtn.com/library/liturgy/zlitur81.htm

PAX+


#13

Tell her not to hold hands during the Lord’s Prayer.


#14

I have taken some of my friends who are not catholic to mass and they went up for a blessing the where very interested


#15

That information is a bit out of date. Here is a later discussion about the issue that is also from EWTN:

ewtn.com/library/Liturgy/zlitur263.htm

There is also this sticky thread:

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=543513

–Jen


#16

Well I hope the Lord’s will is discerned and done.

Exclusion from a simple blessing that could be worded appropriately might have the effect of turning people away from their journey in faith. If it is to be stopped perhaps that ought to be addressed.

PAX+


#17

You want to make your friend feel welcome, considering the fact she has had her first communion, I think you should let her make her own decision. We don’t know the reasons why she left the church and it is more important for her to return and feel welcome vs going and feel alienated. As for covering her head, this is 2013, let her decide. 99% of women I know don’t cover their heads and it’s something that should never be imposed.

Furthermore, blessings are ways for non-catholics, catholics who have stopped practicing or for those who don’t feel worthy to accept communion. It is a way to unite in the grace that comes with communion. In this case, I wouldn’t push it. If she didn’t feel comfortable going up for communion, then it can be suggested.

Remember you want to welcome her home and hope she feels comfortable. The other elements such as going to confession can be discussed if she feels welcome and wants to return. Guide her as the spirit flows.


#18

:thumbsup: THIS!


#19

Thanks for the replies! :slight_smile:


#20

Of course the friend has to make her own decisions, but it is more important that she not receive the Eucharist in a state of mortal sin than that she feel comfortable. Since she hasn’t been going to Mass, the ‘grave matter’ is clearly there.

One can make someone feel welcome without encouraging them to commit further mortal sin. As I mentioned, one way to do this is to stay with her in the pew at Communion time.

–Jen


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