Crazy Catholics: A tradition explained

First, the readings from today are pretty good. You should check them out.

But, today I became acutely aware of something during mass. I’m not sure why it came to my attention, but I’d like to share it here.

If you’re not Catholic, you may have wondered what the heck everybody is doing right before the priest reads the gospel, or New Testament reading. Even if you are Catholic, you may be wondering the same thing. (Us Catholics have a little bit of a rep. for going through the motions and not knowing, or asking, why) If you’re not Catholic AND you’ve never been to a Catholic mass, then take my word for it when I tell you that everybody looks like Tony LaRussa for about a half second.

See, the priest lets everybody know what he is about to read to which the congregation replies, “Glory to you Lord.” Basically, the congregation is proclaiming that the words to be read are for the glorification of Christ’s name. That’s not the interesting part, though.

Usually, while we are saying “Glory to you Lord”, we also make a tiny sign of the cross on our forehead, over our lips, and over our hearts. It’s just a little plus sign motion with the thumb. Why?

Well, it’s a prayer. And just like most of the things Catholics do, if you get past the stereotype and get some actual information, it’s a beautiful little gesture.

All we’re doing is asking Our Lord to help us keep His Word in our minds, on our lips and in our hearts. Until the next time we hear His Word again, we should all be so diligent as to influence our daily activity with the bible verses we last heard.

The next time you get a chance to spend time in your bible, or the next time you hear verses read at church, say that little prayer. And think about what you’re asking Him to help you do. Trust me. You’ll notice the influence in your daily living.

Further Reading:
Pray More talks about influence
How to make better decisions


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