Preparing for Mass

The Joyful Mysteries (continuation)

3. The Nativity of Jesus in Bethlehem

In the night when you had to give birth to your Son, the families of Bethlehem closed their doors to you, O Mary, and to your spouse Joseph. You found an open stable in which you awaited the birth of your son, of the Son of God. You gave Him birth and you received Him in your tender, motherly love. Angels were singing: “Glory to God on High and peace to His beloved people on earth!” You fed Him and laid Him in a manger, and in deep humility and thankfulness, you watched over Him and adored Him. You listened to what was said about Him and you kept everything in your heart.

O Mary, as I prepare for the Holy Sacrifice of Mass, I want to be completely open. Although my heart is weary and cold, I know that I can say, “Come, Lord Jesus, be born in my heart”, because you, O Mary, gave birth to Him in a manger. As I prepare myself for the encounter with Him in the Sacrifice of Mass, may love for Jesus seize me, as your heart was seized by your motherly love for Him. At the very thought that my God is born for me and is coming to me, I want my heart to sing the joyful song of the angels. Let this song enable me to do everything to the glory of the Father and make me a person of good will.

Let my heart be ready to receive Him, to adore Him and to take Him into my daily life. I want to adore Him permanently in my heart and recognise Him always in my neighbour. At this moment of my preparation, I pray for the grace of eucharistic love for the new-born Jesus. May I fall in love with Jesus, because He is in love with me. He is born for me every day on the altar and He wants to be born in my heart.

Help me, O Mary. Let my every day be an unceasing preparation for His birth and His growth within me. May this Holy Mass be for me what Bethlehem was for you. Let me receive Jesus in my heart with love and adore Him profoundly and humbly. The shepherds experienced the coming of the Lord at the moment when they were illuminated by light and when they heard that the Messiah was born. Let me have the same experience in this Holy Mass. Make me ready to leave everything, at least for a moment, and go to Bethlehem to meet Him. May this Holy Mass be for me like the experience of the Magi. The star made them understand that the Messiah was coming, and they followed it. They overcame all difficulties and found you, O Mother, with your new-born Son. May every Mass be for me a new and divine event.

(Read “The Christmas Drama”)
Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory be, O my Jesus.


4. The Presentation of Jesus in the Temple

O Mary, you were obedient to the Law and you went to the Temple with your spouse Joseph to present your Child, your only Son. You offered the first sacrifice of the New Covenant for the salvation of the world. You did it with love and dedication. Thank you, O Mary.

As I prepare myself for the encounter with the Lord in the Sacrifice of Mass in this temple, I pray with you to the Lord for the priest who will celebrate this Eucharist. I give thanks for the vocation that the Lord gave him (if I know the priest, I mention his name…) and I give thanks that he accepted his vocation.

Lord, I implore You, have mercy on this priest. Send him Your Holy Spirit that he may celebrate this Mass with love. Inspire him! Let his heart be ready for this encounter with You. Inspire him and make him able to announce Your word with love and explain it in the power of the Spirit. May the word, which was entrusted to him, find place in his heart and bear fruit in his life.

I pray for all the priests in the world, that they may serve the mysteries of faith with great love. I know that some of them have difficulties because they are ill and poor, or because they feel lonely. O Mary, together with you, I present them to the Lord. May they be healed. May the Lord enrich them with His love. May God be with them in their loneliness. I especially recommend and pray for the priests, who have no more love for the mysteries of faith, who have lost fervour for the celebration of the Eucharist, who do not believe completely that Your Son is truly present with Body and Soul in consecrated Bread and Wine, who receive Holy Communion superficially, who have no desire and no time for a deeper spiritual life.

With you, O Mary, I present to the Lord all those who received a vocation and are preparing themselves for priesthood. By the grace of the Holy Spirit, let them grow in eucharistic love so that one day, like you in the Temple, they may offer the Sacrifice of Mass with love and fervour and joyfully dispense the mysteries of God.

In the Temple, old Simeon and the prophetess Anna recognised in your arms the Saviour of the world and they glorified God. Old Simeon pronounced his canticle:

Lord, now let Your servant depart in peace, according to Your word;
for my eyes have seen Your salvation which You have prepared

in the presence of all peoples,
a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to Your people Israel. (Lk 2:29-32)

O Mary, I include in this prayer and this preparation for Holy Mass elderly and sick people who would like to come, but are not able because of their age and illness. Let them now present their crosses and illnesses to the Lord and unite them with this sacrifice for their personal salvation and for the salvation of the world.

I also pray for those who could come to Mass, but do not come because they have lost faith. I finally pray for all those who never heard about the wonderful miracle of eucharistic love.

Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory be, O my Jesus.


5. The Finding of Jesus in the Temple

O Mary, together with Joseph you educated your only Son. You lived a family life according to the Law of God. You were praying, fasting, observing the Sabbath and all the other prescriptions of the Law. When your Son was twelve, you went on pilgrimage to the Temple in Jerusalem in order to observe the Law, and you had a very unpleasant experience. You lost Jesus, you were sad, for three days you were looking for Him, and finally you found Him in the Temple. You did not understand the words that He told you at that moment, but you kept them in your heart.

O Mary, you want us to experience Holy Mass as a joyful encounter with the Lord, the Living God. Here I am, O Mary, in the temple of God who was made flesh, in the temple of your Son, our Lord. I want to find Him here, to encounter Him once again, and I want to keep in my heart the words that He will tell me. Let my sadness and wavering turn into joy and assurance, into total surrender to the Lord. Let this encounter change my life. I want to pray always and always live with Him as you do.

O Mary, also today you seek your sons and daughters, those who do not come to the temple, those who are lost in life, those who are delayed or never arrive at the destination, which is God. You also seek those who want to do the will of the Father, but are too weak and feeble. You share grief and sadness with sorrowful parents who suffer because of their children, when their children get lost and are destroyed by sin and evil. Let the sorrow of these parents turn into joy. Let them live a joyful family life together with their children and enjoy love and peace that comes from sacrifice and respect for one another.

Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory be, O my Jesus.


(Barbarić, Slavko. 2018. Celebrate Mass with the heart.)

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