The Liturgy is the source and summit
The Mass, or the celebration of the Eucharist, is the central act of worship of the Catholic Church. It is, the Second Vatican Council taught, the “source and summit” of the Christian life. The Council, in teaching about the liturgy, taught that “Christ indeed always associates the Church with Himself in this great work wherein God is perfectly glorified and men are sanctified…In the liturgy the whole public worship is performed by the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ, that is, by the Head and His members. From this it follows that every liturgical celebration, because it is an action of Christ the priest and of His Body which is the Church, is a sacred action surpassing all others."
The Eucharist is Jesus
In the Sacrifice of the Mass, the whole Church enters into the self-offering of Jesus Christ to the Father in His great act of love which brings about our salvation. In the holy exchange of gifts, bread and wine are changed into Christ Himself, offered to the Father, and then the risen and glorified Lord offers Himself as food and drink to His people to strengthen them for mission and to make them holy. Jesus says in John, Chapter 6, “I am the Bread of Life.”
Each member of the Church is called to an active participation in this perfect act of worship. This means, first, an interior participation – a joining of the mind and the heart in the mystery of Christ’s sacrificial love. Second, it means exterior participation – through bodily gestures and sacred signs.
The Eucharist is essential for the Christian life
Participation in the Eucharist is an essential for the Christian. Sunday, the Lord’s Day, the day on which He rose from the dead, is our Sabbath. It is the day each week when Catholics must join in the perfect worship of God the Father through Jesus His Son, in the Holy Spirit.
Particular liturgical ministries
Various members of the Church are called to particular ministries within the mass. Click on the various headings to learn about these roles. Perhaps the Lord is calling you to prayerfully discern whether you are being called to any of them.