Definition: The Catholic liturgy centered around the unbloody sacrifice of Jesus on the altar by the priest. The liturgy includes a procession, a penitential prayer, several Bible readings, a short homily or sermon, the profession of the Nicene Creed, intercessory prayers, and the sacrificial offering of wafers and wine. Attendance at Mass is one of the “five precepts of the Catholic Church,” a list of the minimal requirements for heaven. Failure to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligations is a mortal sin, resulting in hell if not properly confessed to a priest.
Discussion: Mandatory attendance for Catholics at Mass under risk of punishment in hell is an unbiblical fiction that binds the conscience and leads to an attitude of joyless obligation. The repeated sacrifices of what is alleged to be the actual body and blood of Jesus denies the completed “once for all time” sacrifice of Jesus on the cross (Heb. 7:27; 9:12,26,28; 10:10).
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