We are so glad you want to join us for Mass!
Maybe you are visiting or just moved to the Grapevine area and are looking for a place to worship. Possibly you are a Catholic who lives here and hasn’t been in awhile. Or maybe the Catholic faith just intrigues you and you want to find out more about how we pray.
Whatever your circumstances, we thought the questions and answers below might be helpful to you.
What if I haven't been to Mass in a while?
Not much has changed! Maybe one of the things you didn’t like about the Mass growing up is that it was always the same thing, every time, or that it didn’t feed you spiritually as a kid, teen, or young adult. Possibly you experienced a traumatic event or loss and have been mad at God, but now you don’t know where else to turn. Or maybe you slowly stopped coming without even meaning to because of the busy-ness of your life.
The good news is, while the Mass hasn’t changed, you have! Whatever your circumstance, the Mass and Jesus Christ in the Eucharist are calling you back. So come home. We want you to join us at the “Paschal Banquet” of our Lord (CCC 1323). “For he satisfies the thirsty, fills the hungry with good things.” (Psalm 107:9). And if your lengthy absence makes you feel unworthy to receive His Body and Blood, then make time to go to Confession so you can be made new. God’s mercy is abundant and He desires for you to return fully to Him.
I've done some messed up stuff since I last went to Mass. Should I really come?
The truth is: the Church isn’t exclusively for people who have never messed up in their life. In fact, the opposite is true. As Pope Francis has said, the Church is a field hospital striving to heal the ills of the world. The Church is truly for everyone.
If a person is in a really good place in his or her life, then Mass is a great place to praise and thank God (who made it all possible). But, if a person is in a place where they are lower than they have ever been, then Mass is a great place for them to get some real help from a God who really loves them.
The fact is that God loves you, no matter what. And honestly, if you have messed up, there is no better place for you to be than at Mass.
However, there is one caveat. As Catholics, we believe “The Eucharist is ‘the source and summit of the Christian life.’” (CCC 1324), and that because of this, “anyone who desires to receive Christ in the Eucharistic communion must be in a state of grace.” (CCC 1415). If you truly have searched your soul and don’t feel in a ‘state of grace,’ then we encourage you to make time to meet with a priest and go to confession before receiving Christ in the Eucharist. While the Mass can convert your heart, God wishes to pour out his mercy and grace upon you through the amazing Sacrament of Penance. Confession will wipe your soul clean, preparing you to not just attend Mass, but receive Christ’s Body and Blood while at Mass.
What's an easy way for me to be prepared for Mass?
First, read ahead. Coming to Mass having already reflected on the readings for the day is a great way to open your heart more fully to the message within God’s Word. They are always listed on the inside cover of the bulletin under each day, or you can look them up on the USCCB website.
Second, one of the best ways to get more out of Mass is to make some time to go to Confession at least once a month. Most people are surprised to find out how much of a difference it makes in their experience of Mass (and even God in their daily life) when they build the habit of getting to Confession regularly. You don’t necessarily have to “feel bad” for something to go to Confession. In fact, you can go just because you know that you need to open yourself up in a deeper way to God’s love, mercy, and forgiveness.
Third, get involved in a Bible Study. While it is very important to be reading the Bible on your own, a person can really grow when they are able to get involved in a small group. We have several options here at St. Francis, and you are always welcome to join.
I've never been to a Catholic Mass. Can I come check it out?
Please come. Every week people just like you come to Mass and new people join our faith community all the time. The only way to not be new is to show up…and then come back. We pray you will feel at home here. And we want to be sure you both understand what is going on and get any questions you may have about the Catholic faith answered. We have regular inquiry sessions and have several resources available for those searching.
Is anyone allowed to receive Communion at Mass?
As Catholics, we believe “The Eucharist is ‘the source and summit of the Christian life.’” (CCC 1324). Because of this, anyone who desires to receive Christ in the Eucharist must be in full communion with the Catholic Church and in a state of grace (CCC 1415). Catholics believe that the celebration of the Eucharist is a sign of the reality of a oneness of faith, life, and worship; therefore, members of those churches with whom we are not yet fully united are not ordinarily admitted to Holy Communion.
We welcome our fellow Christians to the celebration of the Eucharist as our brothers and sisters. We pray that our common baptism and the action of the Holy Spirit in the Eucharistic celebration will draw us closer to one another and begin to dispel the divisions which separate us. We pray that these will lessen and finally disappear, in keeping with Christ’s prayer for us “that they may all be one” (John 17:21). All who join us at Mass are encouraged to express in their hearts a prayerful desire for unity with the Lord Jesus and with one another, even if they are not Catholic and do not receive Communion.
What if I don't know what to do at Mass or don't know anyone there?
Mass is interpreted for the deaf every Sunday, except the first Sunday from September through May. Those Sundays, the interpreted mass is offered at St. Rita’s in Fort Worth. For more information, contact Connie Martin at 817.560.3300 ext. 305. Deaf persons can also call by video phone at 817.591.0186 or email Connie at firstname.lastname@example.org.