To Encourage Eucharistic Amazement
I begin by inviting Catholics to pray the mass with more love. I hope to affirm what some have been doing for years while inviting others to try something new – maybe for the first time. I’d love to visit your parish. Receiving the Eucharist with love brings us deeper into holy communion. What many pastors already say, I reinforce through simple refrains as the gifts are being offered and as a congregation approaches to receive the Eucharist. The mission of each Domestic Church becomes clearer at each mass when we allow the Holy Eucharist to become Holy Communion.
My name is Michael John Poirier and at 16 a mission made me want to work in parish renewal. At our wedding in 1994, my wife Mary and I dedicated our married life to encourage family prayer. For over 29 years we have served the Church in all but a few states in the US, as well as a few places in Mexico, France, Germany, and Italy offering missions, retreats, holy hours, personal testimony, stories, and songs. Our desire to serve has not waivered these 29 years. We are obedient to the teaching magisterium of the Catholic Church. Our message centers on a prayerful ongoing conversion of heart with the assistance of the sacraments – especially the Eucharist and the Sacrament of Penance and reconciliation.
Presenting at all masses means a potential of reaching 100% of your weekend mass attendees.
There is no event to promote – because the mass is the event. This works in all liturgical seasons. Before each mass I sing a short prelude, inviting all to sing: “Help us pray this mass with love.”
Then I share a 2-3 minute personal testimony of growing up Catholic, but not loving the mass, till, at the age of 25, I let myself love begin to love the Mother of Jesus and at the same time began believing in the True Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. It was then I began to pray the mass with more love. I conclude my testimony by inviting all to ask God to help us pray this mass with love.
More than one music director said, “It felt like we were on retreat.” Ideally, the regular music ministry leads Processional hymn, psalm response, familiar Mass parts, and the Recessional hymn.
Here are the refrains I would lead at Offertory and Communion:
Offertory: “As we prepare this sacred altar, help me prepare the one within,” or “Change me”.
Communion: “Most Sacred heart of Jesus, Truly Present in the Holy Eucharist, I place all my trust in you.” and: “I Love you.” Yo canto en Español. I am also able to sing at the Spanish masses.
Verses are spontaneous and based on the homily, or what we are doing at that part of the mass. When allowed to lead all communion music, I present three themes: 1) Pondering Who and What I am about to receive. 2) Preparing myself to receive 3) Adoring the One Whose heart I am holding. Communion Meditation: I usually tell the priest or deacon, “Please take your time purifying those vessels – because once you finish, the song ends.” More Eucharistic amazement takes place in one minute of adoring him after receiving than in one hour of adoring him up on the altar. Why? Because in order to adore him as we hold him means our hearts must bow low.
If we are allowed to offer our Family Prayer Lights after all masses, there is no cost to the parish. When announcements are permitted at end of mass, before dismissal, I tell about Family Prayer Lights with timers that can help remind families to pray while connecting family members in different time zones. Donations for Family Prayer Lights go to our 501 (C) (3) non profit corporation:
Holy Family Apostolate Corporation and sustain the work we do at no cost for those near death,
families in mourning, as well as the spiritual mentorship my wife offers to women.
If announcements are not allowed at end of mass, I would share about that before mass begins.
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