On November 27, 2011, the new Roman Missal translation was launched in our Mass celebrations. For our final portion of Mass 101, we will look at the Blessing and Dismissal portion of that Mass, alongside Cardinal Wuerl and Mike Aquilina.
Did you know…
- Mass takes its name from the final words of the celebration, the dismissal. “Ite, missa est.” (“Go forth, the Mass is ended.”)
- Pope Benedict XVI believes the abrupt ending to Mass is modeled after Luke 24, where Jesus meets with the disciples after meeting the men on the road to Emmaus. The men, not recognizing him as Christ, invited him to eat with them. It was only after he “took bread, broke it, and gave it to them” that they realized who he was. (Luke 24:30) “Then he vanished from their sight, and they were left to tell the good news to their fellow disciples. They ‘set out at once’ for Jerusalem (Luke 24:33).” (The Mass p. 205)
- The Mass ends as it begins: with the Sign of the Cross.
Read Luke 24 and the scene described above, and consider our own similarities with the disciples. Do we not often enter into Mass distracted by our own concerns and burdens, only to be greeted by Christ in the Eucharist? Are we not refreshed by his presence, and then sent—almost abruptly, but no less purposefully—to tell the world of his love and forgiveness?
Cardinal Wuerl says this:
“What we receive in Mass we must now take into the world. The challenging thing about Christian faith is that we cannot hold on to it unless we give it away—unless we share it with others. We have received Christ, and he as mingled his flesh with ours. His blood courses through us and gives life to our bodies—gives his life to our bodies! We become his face and voice and hands and feet as we walk out into the crowded sidewalks, as we return to our homes and neighborhoods, and we report for another workday.” (p. 206)
May the grace and peace of Christ be with you!
Go forth, the Mass is ended.
Thanks be to God!
Thank you for celebrating and learning more about the Mass with us! We hope you enjoyed Mass 101.