I am finally getting around to reading that book that it says on my sidebar I have been reading for the past 3 months. I am only into the second chapter and already I am blown away. The chapter I am reading is about the Mass. As I have mentioned before, daily Mass is quite a struggle for us sometimes, especially now that it is winter and it has been snowing/sleeting/raining/icing a lot. We drive on country roads - roads that don't get plowed very well - roads that never get salted. Not to mention the fact that the older I get, the more fears I seem to be able to conjure up about driving in bad weather.
Quite often I ask my confessor about daily Mass and his answer always seems to be the same, "What would a saint do?" My answer has gotten to be the same, too, "A saint would walk backwards with no shoes on in the snow to get to daily Mass." He never tells me I'm wrong.
So I am reading this chapter on daily Mass and it says,
"...we must consider ourselves fortunate every time we have an opportunity to attend a Holy Mass. In order not to lose the opportunity, we should never withhold ourselves because it might cost us some sacrifice...Let us remember that St. Maria Goretti would travel on foot 15 miles to and fro to go to Sunday Mass. We should think of Santina Campana who went to Mass while she had a high fever. Think of St. Maximilian Kolbe who offered Holy Mass when his health was in such a pitiful condition that one of his brothers in religion had to support him at the altar so that he would not fall. And how many times Blessed Pio of Pietrelcina celebrated Holy Mass while he was bleeding and had a fever!"
Sure makes me feel a little lukewarm for not wanting to drive that 1/2 hour to Mass in the snow! Of course I have really begun to see that God is not outdone in His generosity. The graces that we have received by making the extra effort to get to Mass are innumerable; probably a lot more than I even know.
I would like to leave you today with some words of encouragement. If, for whatever reason, you find yourself desiring to go to daily Mass but can't seem to overcome the obstacles, please keep trying. Start out slowly by adding only one or two days a week. Eventually you will feel that you can dive in head first and tackle at least Monday thru Friday. For some people Saturdays are easier to get to Mass because their spouse is home, but for others (like us) it is hard to even find a Saturday morning Mass that is close. Here is another quote from the book "Jesus, Our Eucharistic Love" to encourage you on your journey.
"Wonderful are the saving effects which every Sacrifice of the Mass produces in the souls of those who participate. It obtains sorrow and pardon for sins. It lessens the temporal punishment due to sins. It weakens the influence of Satan and the untamed impulses of our flesh. It strengthens the bonds of our union in the Body of Christ. It protects us from danger and disaster. It shortens the punishment of Purgatory; and it obtains for us a higher degree of glory in Heaven."