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Saint Augustine of Hippo is considered on of the greatest Christian thinkers of all time and the Doctor of the Church.
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I have been in situations where it was impossible to make it to Mass (except through teleportation). I used it as an excuse to note say any prayers; I wish I could change that decision.
I truly don't think some people get it! Until their dad is having a heart attack, or their house is burning down, or some other emergency happens. Then, they hope and pray the folks are at work, even if it means they are missing Mass. I worked at a Jewish hospital, and even they did not make exceptions for the Jewish people working. Nowadays we would be hard-pressed to find a healthcare provider who doesn't sacrifice some sort of faith practices because of their profession. Most of us truly believe we are doing God's work.
I have Orthodox Jewish friends; they do not use electricity from Friday sundown to Saturday sundown. A couple of them can do emergency medical work and carry their pagers around anyway. So even they are not completely inflexible on the issue.
The rural peasants of Christendom worked out in the fields from dawn until dusk, six days of the week. And yet, despite having a backbreaking 72-hour workweek in some instances, and commonly having a very large family to look after, on the whole they went to Mass every single day.
What excuse do we have for not attending Mass even once a week?
I invite you (and anyone else interested in him) to listen to a retelling of his incredible life and ministry here:
You're missing my point anyway. My point is that if those who have had a much more grueling work schedule than us did go to Mass every day, at least for a time and at least in a locale, then we have no excuse to miss Mass on Sunday in the days of instant communication and cars.
I dated someone for 2+ years. She'd been a Christmas and Easter Catholic since her college years. I went every Sunday and often asked her to meet me there. I'd even meet her at her parish across town. Sometimes I'd call her at the office and ask if she'd like to come to the Cathedral for the weekday noon mass. At first I only did this on Holy Days of Obligation, but eventually started asking her to meet there on ordinary days. She later told me she loved the weekday masses best because the people who were there truly wanted to be there. As time went by, she started attending Sunday mass more regularly and now goes more often than not. I didn't remonstrate with her. I didn't browbeat. I didn't nag. I just went and asked if she'd like to come too. At first she didn't want to. Eventually she did. We no longer see each other, but as far as I know she's still going more or less regularly. God is good. We need only be patient, trust him, pray, and LOVE.
If you are not aware, some fire fighters work 24-hour shifts and health care workers and police may work the same 12-hour shift on back-to-back days, so it is entirely possible that when you factor in the need to sleep they may not be able to attend Mass on either a Saturday evening or Sunday.
Thanks for posting this.
Having always lived in large cities, I've often attended parishes that are near police and fire stations. It always moved me to see police officers and firefighters standing in the back of the church, with radios held to their ear on low volume, hoping to get through the mass without a call. Their devotion is moving.
There's a couple my age who often sit in front of me during mass. The position they chose is near a side exit. He's in plainclothes but in a tactical gang unit. He'll sometimes come in part way through the mass. On occasion he'll lift the radio to his ear then kiss her and slip out the door. He's usually in a flak vest with his Glock, extra clips, and cuffs on his belt. The look his wife gives him as he kisses her tenderly on the forehead and rushes out is always heart-rending. She knows he patrols the projects, is involved in large busts there which often end in fire fights, and has been shot once before. But he's there in mass when he can be there.