The Mass, A Continuation of the Sacrifice of the Cross
By Père Chauvin, S.S. S.
Mary, when contemplating Jesus dying, adored through His abasement God’s justice and mercy.
When assisting at Mass, unite with her sentiments, and with her recognize the malice of sin which has so disfigured the most beautiful among the children of men. Mary united herself at the same time to the sacrifice of her Son. She joined her tears to the tears of Jesus, her sufferings to the sufferings of Jesus, the immolation of her life to the immolation of Jesus’ life. When assisting at Mass take your share in the sorrows of Jesus. Let your heart be torn with sorrow at the sight of the agony of your Well-Beloved. Tenderly compassionate the outrages with which He is still daily laden upon His new Calvaries.
It is in this way that souls who have never lost their innocence ought to assist at the drama of the Altar.
Have you had the misfortune of having been a great sinner, or simply of having lost by mortal sin at some fatal period of your life the grace of the Divine Friendship? Then assist at the Mass in the same dispositions that Magdalen the public sinner of the Gospel, assisted at the death of Jesus. At Jesus’ feet acknowledge your sins, weep over them at the cause of His death, humble yourself, and open your heart to the floods of grace and pardon that will escape from the Saviour’s Heart. [Here I thought it most appropriate to append the experience of a worldly, non-Catholic when attending her first Mass – the Tridentine. This woman’s heart had been softened through a severe trial and one Sunday, finding herself at the mystical Golgotha, Jesus from His Cross gazed upon her. and with that one look, He offered her the grace of repentance and eternal felicity in His Kingdom. His gaze had rested upon Irene West who repented and converted to the true Faith. This account is found in the same publication. ]
“We went to Mass. I was not long seated when I began to feel strangely uncomfortable. I was thoroughly in the grip of the holy and sacred atmosphere, and my whole being seemed first to revolt, then to respond, until I absorbed more of the true spirit of religion than I had know in all my life before. Then I began to weep, and, oh! I can never express what I felt! All pride left me; I felt crushed, humiliated and humbled to the very earth. A panorama of my whole life swept before my eyes. I realized the nothingness of it all, and the truth seemed to rush upon me with such force that I was beside myself; for I could not possible restrain my weeping, although crying was something I had always despised in others as a sign of weakness. Well, when I walked out of that door, I felt as if every sacred image in that little church of St. Mary’s by the lake had thrown an elastic streamer around my heart, and that, although I went, I should never again be free, not in the same sense. I felt that I was being held in captivity, but, once outside, I tried to shake off the feeling. I knew that I was not, and never should be, as I was when I entered that church.
Next day my friend suggested that we call on one of the priests, and as that one Mass had left an indelible impression on my mind, I assented.”
Continuing with Père Chauvin’s article: