Sometimes I grow bored with attending daily Mass.
I wondered why that is. I thought I should make myself be more
enthusiastic about Mass. But shouldn't I be enthusiastic that Jesus
Christ is truly present in the community gathered and in the bread
and wine that is blessed, broken and shared? Yes, of course … but
still, I'm human, and the way I figure these things out for myself
is through metaphors.
What is something I really enjoy I thought to myself? Answer:
Binge-watching TV episodes on Netflix or Hulu Plus.
There it is. My metaphor!
Attending daily Mass is like binge-watching something on Netflix
or Hulu. If you aren't familiar with this "binge-watching" thing,
basically it's sitting down for multiple hours on end and watching
multiple episodes in a row of a TV show on Netflix or Hulu.
So, why is attending daily Mass, particularly at Saint Meinrad
Archabbey, like binge-watching something from Netflix or Hulu?
Answer: Typically the characters, much like in a TV show, are
consistent at daily Mass: the monks and guests concelebrate and
participate in the Mass. Hymns and chants are part of the Mass,
similar to a theme song in a TV show.
The storyline changes at Mass with different Old and New
Testament readings, Psalms and Gospel readings - again, along the
same lines of a TV episode progressing along with new stories and
There are even Parts I, II and III in TV shows, which make
viewers excitedly watch the next episode, and the same goes for
scripture readings at Mass, where hearers return to Mass the next
day or the next weekend to find out Parts II and III.
Oh, and what about the credits at the end of each episode? Well,
we celebrate Mass to give credit to Christ who was crucified for
our eternal, heavenly reward. We celebrate Mass to give thanks for
the many blessings in our lives and to share our Christ-inspired
love with others.
That's where attending daily Mass and binge-watching Netflix or
Hulu differ. I don't leave binge-watching Netflix or Hulu with
anything other than earthly entertainment.
Conclusion: As much as I enjoy binge-watching Netflix or Hulu, I
had a reality check this week about my priorities. It's Christ's
love that is sufficient for us, and it's OK to dabble in Netflix
and Hulu, but ultimately we should be satisfied in receiving so
much more in the way of grace, peace, communal prayer, reflection,
song and chant through binge-Massing. It's the spiritual
"entertainment" (read: reward!) that we should be after.
Consider joining the monastic community for daily Mass on
Monday-Saturday at 7:30 a.m. and on Sunday at 9:30 a.m. to catch
the next episode of the Eucharistic Feast! See the prayer schedule