New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan has issued an urgent appeal to Catholics to get back into the habit of going to Sunday Mass.
Are we “going to restaurants?” Cardinal Dolan asks in an essay Wednesday in Catholic New York. “To the kids’ soccer and little league games? To the store? To the beauty parlor? To gatherings with family and friends?”
“Well, then, it’s time to get back to Mass,” he concludes.
Reminding Christians of the commandment to “keep holy the Lord’s Day,” the cardinal notes that the temporary exemption from Sunday worship due to the “emergency health crisis” was never meant to be permanent and the time has come to return to Mass.
While the elderly, or people with compromising health conditions “can still excuse themselves, as has always been the case,” he adds, this is not the case of most people.
People are getting out more and more, Dolan states, for things that are less important than worshipping God and being spiritually nourished.
Furthermore, live-stream Masses, while a helpful stopgap, “are not the same as ‘being there,’” he notes.
While people have gradually begun to return, the time has come for everyone to come back, he argues. “No more gradual about it! It’s time to get back to Sunday Mass!”
All the health precautions against the spread of the coronavirus have their obvious utility, the cardinal declares, and yet nothing is more important than a person’s spiritual health.
“We need medicine! We need food for the soul! We need vaccination from sin, Satan and eternal death!” he declares. “We need herd immunity as sheep under Christ our Good Shepherd.”
“See you at Mass!” he concludes.