Coming to Mass for the first time? Here’s what you need to know

MASS AND COMMUNION ETIQUETTE

  • Please turn off all electronics (cell phones, tablets, etc.).

  • No food, drinks, or chewing gum, please.

  • All Catholics not in mortal (serious) sin and who have fasted for one hour are welcome to receive Holy Communion.

  • Make a reverential bow as you step up to receive both the Body and Blood of Christ.

  • Hold your clean hands chest-high and outstretched to receive the Eucharist or receive on your tongue.

  • “Receive” Communion in an out-stretched hand. Do not “take” or “grab” it from the minister. 

  • When receiving from the chalice, make sure you have a firm grip on it and make sure the Communion Minister has firmly re-grasped it when you are done.

  • If you are ill, do not receive from the chalice.

  • When the minister says, “Body of Christ” or “Blood of Christ”, the response is a clear “Amen!” (which means “I believe!” or “So be it!”)

  • Consume the host immediately. If you walk away with the host in your hand, a Communion Minister may come after you to make sure you consume the host.

  • Modest dress is appreciated.  Men, please remove your hats.

  • When we enter and leave Church, we cross ourselves with Holy Water, reminding us of our Baptism.

  • When we enter and leave Church, we genuflect toward the Tabernacle in the chapel out of respect for the Eucharist.

  • No one should be moving around during the following times:

    • When the lector is reading the First and Second Readings from Scripture;

    • When the priest or deacon is reading the Gospel;

    • When the priest or deacon is giving the homily;

    • When the priest is saying the words of Consecration, changing the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ (during the Eucharistic prayer between the Holy, Holy, Holy and the Great Amen).

    • Exceptions to the above: if someone is ill or has a crying baby who is distracting others.

    • If you or your child leaves church and re-enters during one of these times, you should remain standing at the back until these parts are over. The ushers have been instructed to ask people who are entering at these times to stand and wait at the back to be seated.

  • The south cry room is for parents who are more relaxed about their children’s behavior during Mass. The north cry room is for parents who are able to keep their children relatively quiet during Mass. The back cry room is for latecomers and others who need it.

  • There are restrooms by both front cry rooms.

  • Please remain in your pew until the final song ends.

Jesus said to them, ‘I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst.
— John 6:35