The Eternal Mass

Am I getting older or is the news getting worse? All around the world seems to be disintegrating. What was considered immorality by everyone is now championed as good and progressive. The Christian church in America — Catholics included–seem to be swept along by the crass materialism, commercial mentality and all the complacency and desires of the world. The political and economic scene seems corrupt and rotten to the core. I feel like we are all on the Titanic in those hours when everyone was in denial and continued to imagine that all was well. The ways of the world all seem ephemeral, inane and absurd.

In the midst of the chaos, on a beautiful summer morning it was my joy to say Mass. That’s all.

Only ten people were there, but we connected with something older and greater and more permanent than all the shifting sands of this temporal order. Read more.


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  • Greg Cook

    Thank you, Fr. Dwight. I am entering the Catholic Church by choice at age 50 and it is precisely the reality you describe here that sums up why.

  • Joe

    Thanks Father, loved the article.

  • Janet

    I thank God for his church, solid, unmoving and true, and for you my priest, because without you, I could not receive him. This is my refuge and my rock.
    God Bless

  • Marie

    “So real, in fact, that I sometimes at the altar feel that the chalice and paten are too heavy for me to lift. ” This touched my heart. I feel the reality in a different way as a sacristan – and there are so many times I wish people would stop talking to me as I am cleaning and drying and rinsing all the sacred vessels, linens, etc… I enjoy the time spent ironing, crisp edges and proper folds. This is part of my prayer, and I sense the “reality” right there in these objects which I touch – which the priest has touched – which contained not so long ago, my Lord and my God.

  • Matthew the Wayfarer

    Did you celebrate ‘ad orientem’? Did you use Latin? Enquiring minds want to know!

  • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

    I celebrate one daily Mass per week ad orientem, and we use the Greek Kyrie and Latin Sanctus and Gloria regularly. I do not celebrate the Latin Mass.

  • doughboy

    I love the small and quiet Masses especially. Father, I bet assisting at one of our Lord’s Masses where you’re the Celebrant would be a gift. Some day …

  • Mark Ferris

    As a Maronite Subdeacon candidate, I have the honor of serving at Divine Liturgy Monday mornings. It is sooo different from Sunday Liturgy. It is impossible to describe the feeling of celebrating while very nearly alone. Thank you for doing it justice.

  • Brandon Howey

    The Curé d’Ars, St. Jean Vianney, said, “If we knew the value of the Mass, we would die of joy.”

    The best part of my day is mass. Our lord is always there for us. The other day someone told me they met a celebrity at a random shop. They were quite animated about the experience and it reminded of the videos of the young adults swooning over the Beatles in the early 60s. For some reason celebrating the mass popped into my head. I have the honor of speaking to god directly every Sunday or when I can attend a daily. God > Hollywood. This ramble ends! God Bless Father Fr. Longenecker and my brothers and sisters in Christ.

  • Susan

    I understand how you feel, Father. I am an EMHC and sometimes I feel I can’t breathe knowing what is in that chalice and what I am doing. That precious blood and body are our victory over sin and death.