Historic Title

The Linked Parishes of  Pope John XXIII  &  Christ The King

2020-21 Faith Formation Program

Grades 6-8



Has anyone ever asked you what the Mass is all about? 


Take a few moments and think about this question. 


What do you really know about

the Mass?   


The origin of the Mass goes back to Jesus’ Last Supper with His apostles, which was the night before He would die on the cross.  Jesus and His apostles gathered together to take part in the annual celebration of the Jewish Passover.


Like today, the ritual of the Passover celebration in Jesus’ time included songs, readings from sacred scripture, and the Passover meal.  

During this last meal with His apostles, Jesus took the simple elements of the Passover meal, the bread and wine, and transformed them into His actual Body and Blood.  He commanded his Apostles, and all that would follow them through out the ages, to continue to do this:


Passover refers to God’s intervention that resulted in the freeing of the ancient Jewish people (Israelites) from captivity and slavery by the Egyptians. Their captivity and enslavement lasted 435 years! 

Israelites Escape

For a deep understanding


Exodus Chapters 5-12


Luke 22; 14-20

When the hour came Jesus took His place at the table with the Apostles.  He said to them,  “ I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer, for I tell you, I shall not eat again until there is a fulfillment in the kingdom of God.”


Then Jesus took a cup, gave thanks (to God), and said, “ Take this and share it among yourselves; for I tell you from this time on I shall not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” 


Then He took the bread, said the blessing, broke it and gave to them, saying, “THIS IS MY BODY, WHICH WILL BE GIVEN FOR YOU, DO THIS IN MEMORY OF ME.” likewise he took the cup after they had eaten saying,



These transformative words by Jesus, were embraced by the earliest Christians. 

“This is My body and this is My blood… do this in memory of Me"


St Paul, who encountered Jesus after His ascension into heaven, wrote in His letter to the community in Corinth, about 20 years after Jesus’ death, the worship ritual and words used by the early Christians.  These words and rituals were passed down by the Apostles, and are for the most part,the same that we experience at Mass today.

For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes. Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will have to answer for the body and blood of the Lord.

(1 Corinthians 11:26-27)


The mystery of the Most Holy Trinity is the central mystery of Christian faith and life.  It is the mystery of God in himself.

TRINITY refresher video


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VIDEO: Historical Roots of the Mass

Jesus’ very words transformed experiences into a new reality.  When He said something, He meant it. 

Throughout the Gospels, Jesus used words to heal people from various diseases, He caste out evil spirits, He raised Lazarus from the dead; Jesus even calmed storms. 


In the first paragraph of the Gospel of John, Jesus is referred to this way:


“ In the Beginning was the Word and the Word was with God the Word was God and….. the Word was made flesh, and dwelt amongst us. ”


This means that Jesus is God, and when He commands something to happen ---- IT Happens!





Ashley talks about the sacrament of the Eucharist and her experience with the Catholic Mass, and what each of us brings to it.

Church Halls

The Parts of the Mass

The Mass is often referred to as the Sacred Liturgy.  The word, ‘Liturgy’ means worship of the people.  And so the Mass requires people to be present.  It starts when the people gather. 


The Mass is one of the few places where all divisions are caste aside.  Everyone who gathers comes as a child of God.  We kneel, stand and pray together as one.   It doesn’t matter if one is rich or poor; educated or uneducated; young or old; have different views of the world; or are female or male. 


It is in this unity, that we encounter the Risen Christ.

Church Halls

The Introductory Rites



  • Entrance

  • Greeting

  • Penitential Act

  • Glory to God

  • Collect

The Mass officially begins when the priest leads us with the SIGN OF THE CROSS;  "In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”.  Immediately we place ourselves before the Trinity, and we belong to God.  Instead of belonging to ourselves and making ourselves the center of attention, with the sign of the cross we acknowledge God’s ownership of us and His ultimate act of love for our salvation, which is the cross itself.

Once the priest begins Mass he acts in the Person of Christ.  His greeting, actions, and words are regarded as coming from Christ Himself.  


So, when the priest says, “ The Lord be with you”, and we reply, “And with your spirit” we are acknowledging Christ  is acting through the priest.  This is called Christ in persona.

The Introductory Rite

The Penitential Rite

When we are asked to call to mind our sins, it is not to cause us anguish or to make us feel bad about ourselves.   It is meant to enlighten us and make us more determined to rid ourselves of imperfections that separate us from God. 


God loves us no matter what, but it is us that keep that perfect union from happening.  The closer we come to God, the more obvious are our sins. 


And so after our acknowledgement of our imperfections, we beg God for His mercy, in the KYRIE- Lord Have Mercy; Christ have Mercy. God is eager to grant us mercy, and forgiveness, but we must ask for it.

How awesome this is! 




This song of praise is done in a most joyful manner.  All those of Heaven and Earth are singing out praise to God.   The Gloria lifts us up and is the formula to a truly joyful life. 


In the Gloria God becomes our center, and when God becomes the foremost center of our lives PEACE results.  When we enter into the fullness of worship, giving thanks, and giving all praise and honor to God, our lives become unselfishly LOVE CENTERED.  We are able to see God in all His creation, and that includes one another. 




The Introductory Rites conclude with an opening prayer, called the Collect.


The celebrant invites the gathered assembly to pray and, after a brief silence, proclaims the prayer of the day.


The Collect gathers the prayers of all into one and disposes all to hear the Word of God in the context of the celebration.

The Church has established a 3 year liturgical cycle of readings -A B C from scripture; both the New and Old Testaments, including psalms.    This enables the people of God to experience more of the Word of God

Church Halls

Liturgy of the Word



  • First Reading

  • Responsorial Psalm

  • Second Reading (on Sundays and solemnities)

  • Gospel Acclamation

  • Gospel

  • Homily

  • Profession of Faith (on Sundays, solemnities, and special occasions)

  • Universal Prayer

The Homily by the priest or deacon is supposed to highlight themes, events, and/or ideas in scripture. Many times background information is given concerning the language, customs, characters, symbols etc in the readings so that those in attendance can understand better the meaning of the readings. 


In doing so, the Homilist is able to connect the scriptures to the world today; making them come alive in the world and times that we experience. 


Both the priest and deacon, invite the Holy Spirit to come upon them, so that when they proclaim their Homily, they are acting as Christ in persona.

The Homily



“I” believe in one God....


...is a personal declaration within the community of Catholic believers that you are certain of all that is contained within that proclamation of faith. 


We covered the CREED in great detail in our last lesson.

Also Known As...PRAYER of the FAITHFUL


Have you ever asked someone to help you? It is natural to ask others for help.  This is what this part of the Mass is all about.  During the Prayer of the Faithful, we ask everyone present at Mass to pray for one another; and to direct their minds and hearts to God as prayer petitions are read.  This can include issues within our local community, our country and the world in general.  


At this time, specific names of people are read.  They may be ill, or have other difficulties. Also we pray for those who have passed away recently and for others who are being remembered at Mass during the week. 

Intercessory Prayers

Church Halls

Liturgy of the Eucharist



  • Presentation of the Gifts (Offertory) and Preparation of the Altar

  • Prayer over the Offerings

  • Eucharistic Prayer

    • Preface

    • Holy, Holy, Holy

    • First half of prayer, including Consecration

    • Mystery of Faith

    • Second half of prayer, ending with Doxology

  • The Lord's Prayer

  • Sign of Peace

  • Lamb of God

  • Communion

  • Prayer after Communion

Within the Mass, the Eucharist is the summit, meaning the highest point of encountering the Risen Christ.  It is in the Liturgy of the Eucharist that we experience Holy Thursday ( Last Supper), the Crucifixion ( suffering, and sacrifice in union with Christ) and Easter ( the triumph over death and evil). It is in the Liturgy of the Eucharist that Jesus comes to us, willingly, wanting to unite with us by giving Himself in the outward appearance of bread and wine.  Jesus is truly present- Body, Soul and Divinity in the Eucharist. 


This is  the central teaching of the Catholic Church that extends back to the time of the Apostles.  It is the heart beat of the Church.  Without this reality, the Church would be nothing more than a “nice” organization or club.


The Mass is a sacred ritual that enables all present to enter into God’s world.  It goes beyond time and space.  It is much more than a remembering or a re-enactment, in that it brings the past to the present reality.  What happened about 2000 years ago at the Last Supper, at the Crucixion, and the Resurrection is brought forth today in the Mass as if it happened now.   There is a term for this: Anamnesis In essence we are experiencing these events in the Mass.


Gifts of bread and wine are brought to the altar and accepted by the priest.  The simple bread and wine symbolize all of God’s Earthly creation, including ourselves.  It is in this simple offering that we enter into the mystery of redemption through Christ who sacrificed Himself for us.

The Eucharistic Prayer is the heart of the Liturgy of the Eucharist. In this prayer, the celebrant acts in the person of Christ as head of his body, the Church. He gathers not only the bread and the wine, but the substance of our lives and joins them to Christ's perfect sacrifice, offering them to the Father.

The Eucharistic Prayers make clear that these prayers are offered, not to Christ, but to the Father. It is worship offered to the Father by Christ as it was at the moment of his passion, death and resurrection, but now it is offered through the priest acting in the person of Christ, and it is offered as well by all of the baptized, who are part of Christ's Body, the Church. This is the action of Christ's Body, the Church at Mass.

The priest offers the Eucharistic Prayer in the first person plural, for example, "Therefore, O Lord, we humbly implore you…"  This "we" signifies that all the baptized present at the Eucharistic celebration make the sacrificial offering in union with Christ, and pray the Eucharistic Prayer in union with him. And what is most important, we do not offer Christ alone; we are called to offer ourselves, our lives, our individual efforts to grow more like Christ and our efforts as a community of believers to spread God's Word and to serve God's people, to the Father in union with Christ through the hands of the priest. Most wonderful of all, although our offering is in itself imperfect, joined with the offering of Christ it becomes perfect praise and thanksgiving to the Father.


Eucharistic Prayer

Eucharistic Prayers

For a closer look at the various prayers, music, chants (in chant notation) and directions to the celebrant during the prayers


Holy, Holy, Holy

Holy, Holy, Holy


Do you know why we say this three times? 

What is the significance of three?  


It denotes the Godhead- the Trinity- God in completeness. The prayer continues:


Lord God of Hosts, heaven and earth are full of your Glory, Hosanna in the Highest. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord


This prayer of adoration and praise is the most important prayer that the community of the faithful can sing.   It is a proclamation by the faithful in a joyful manner that God is to be loved, adored, and praised.  Heaven and earth are together praising and rejoicing in God.  

The Liturgy of the Eucharist ends with the Doxology:




response : The great Amen!


 This prayer praises the Trinity, and it is through Christ that we can know and reach the Father.  We acknowledge this by our response of AMEN!

The rite begins with the Lord's Prayer. Jesus taught this prayer to his disciples when they asked how to pray (cf. Mt 6:9-13, Lk 11:2-4). In this prayer, the people join their voices to pray for the coming of God's kingdom and to ask God to provide for our needs, forgive our sins, and bring us to the joy of heaven.

Church Halls

Communion Rite



  • The Lord's Prayer

  • Sign of Peace

  • Lamb of God

  • Communion

  • Prayer after Communion


The celebrant prays that the peace of Christ will fill our hearts, our families, our Church, our communities, and our world.


As a sign of hope, the people extend to those around them a sign of peace.

The celebrant breaks the consecrated bread as the people sing the Agnus Dei or "Lamb of God." John the Baptist proclaimed Jesus as "the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world" (Jn 1:29).


The action of breaking the bread recalls the actions of Jesus at the Last Supper, when he broke the bread before giving it to his disciples. One of the earliest names for the Eucharistic celebration is the breaking of the bread (Lk 24:35; Acts 2:42, 46).

Before receiving Holy Communion, the celebrant and assembly acknowledge their unworthiness to receive so great a gift. The celebrant receives Holy Communion first and then the people come forward.



During the Concluding Rites, announcements may be made (if necessary) after the Prayer after Communion. The celebrant then blesses the people assembled. Sometimes, the blessing is very simple. On special days, the blessing may be more extensive.


In every case, the blessing is always trinitarian: "May almighty God bless you, the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit." It is in the triune God and in the sign of the cross that we find our blessing.


After the blessing, the deacon dismisses the people. In fact, the dismissal gives the liturgy its name.


The word "Mass" comes from the Latin word, " Missa." At one time, the people were dismissed with the words "Ite, missa est" (literally meaning "Go, she—meaning you, the Church—has been sent").


The word "Missa" is related to the word "missio," the root of the English word "mission." The liturgy does not simply come to an end.


Those assembled are sent forth to bring the fruits of the Eucharist to the world.

Church Halls

Concluding Rites



  • Optional announcements

  • Greeting and Blessing

  • Dismissal