Welcome to 2017, where nothing is the same as you’ve ever remembered it being before, and the whole world seems slightly out of whack.
For me, this feeling of being a bit off became overwhelming as I flipped through my parish calendar and realized this year we experience the shortest Advent possible.
Kicking off on December 3 and wrapping up just 22 days later, this fast-tracked season is the real deal.
We barely have time to get ourselves properly in preparation mode before Baby Jesus will be placed center stage in our Nativity Scenes.
Which brings me to Sunday, December 24.
This year, December 24 is both the Fourth Sunday of Advent and Christmas Eve.
As Fr. Thomas Petri, OP put it on Twitter:
“Since everyone is already in the Christmas mood, here’s a friendly reminder: since Christmas falls on a Monday this year, you need to go to Mass twice. Sunday evening doesn’t count for both. Two obligations (Sunday & Christmas). Two Masses.”
I feel obligated to first go out of my way to point out that the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is a beautiful experience every single time we go. It is a place where Heaven literally touches down on Earth, where the bread on the altar becomes the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and a place where we should find ourselves wanting to be more than pretty much any other place I can think of.
But … as a parent of three kids 7 and under … ahhhhhhhhhh!
Surviving Mass on a regular Sunday seems like reason enough to reward Mom and Dad with a cup of coffee and some donut holes; the idea of going on back-to-back days just as the stress of Christmas reaches its pinnacle is a tad daunting, to be quite honest.
As I cracked open my parish bulletin and peeked at the Mass times, though, I had another (completely crazy) idea:
A Mass Doubleheader.
What if we went to Mass at 11:00 am … and then … came back for Christmas Vigil Mass just a few hours later?
It might just be crazy enough to work!
Pray for us.
What are you plans for managing our “double obligation” this year? Got any tips for handling the family at back-to-back Masses? Let us know in the comments.
Copyright 2017 Tommy Tighe