Why I Love 7:30am Mass

I hear it all the time– “HOW do you manage to get your whole family up and out the door for 7:30am Mass on Sundays?”  

 

Well, it’s not really that bad.  I mean, I’m not going to tell you it’s all sunshine and roses.  I won’t claim that you never hear me saying, “Ten minutes, people!  We have ten minutes and I am the ONLY one in this house close to ready!!!”  It happens.  But, as a whole, it’s not that bad.  And it’s worth it.  Really.  Here are ten reasons I love it:

 

  1. I love early morning light.  I really do.  So it’s no hardship for me to rise early and see the sun come up in the early hours.
  2. There’s no traffic.  The “Sunday drivers” aren’t out yet for the day.  Most churches are hours away from starting.  We’re pretty much alone on the road.
  3. Parking is easy-peasy.  Just seeing the parking lot of our church right before the 10am Mass begins is enough to give me heart palpitations– it is MADNESS.  But for the 7:30am?  No worries.  There are always available spots.
  4. People are in good moods.  Let’s face it– the people who go to the early mass tend to be those that are early birds.  And, at that point, really, you haven’t had a chance for anything to go wrong yet!
  5. The old people.  When you go to 7:30am Mass, you should be prepared for, um, a mature crowd.  They are, far and away, the majority there.  And we LOVE that.  My husband and I lived and worked in Florida for years and we are big fans of the seniors!   And they?  Love our kids.  They’re often the only littles ones in there.  It works well.
  6. It’s easy for me to fast.  I fast before receiving communion.  When you go to Mass early like we do?  It’s not hard at all.   I don’t even have the chance to get particularly hungry, to be honest.
  7. It works for the toddler.  Our youngest is the only one who gets “snacks” at church.  With this schedule, we pack her little “breakfast-to-go” (Cheerios, raisins, string cheese, and peas.  Yes, peas.)   She can easily eat that while we worship and it helps keep her occupied!
  8. We are entertaining.  Yes, yes we are.  Most people seem charmed and amused at this early hour.  Frustration hasn’t had a chance to set in quite yet.
  9. We have the WHOLE DAY ahead of us.  I am not kidding when I tell you that we are back in our house, in comfy clothes, by 8:45am.  That’s kind of nice.
  10. We are not rushed.  Because of #9, perhaps, we can take time to breathe, ponder, and actually reflect on the priest’s final words before we rush out the door:
“The Mass had ended.  Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.”

For us, in this season, 7:30am Mass just makes sense.

 

How about you?  Does your family regularly attend a religious service?  What time is it at?

 

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24 comments to Why I Love 7:30am Mass

  • We have church at 10:30 and it usually lasts until 12. It’s nice because my daughter gets to have a good night’s rest and usually I’ve had time to feed her a good breakfast. I would be lying though if I said I’m not still working on the “keeping the toddler quiet” in church ;).

    • Oh, Miranda, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again– in my opinion, the toddler years are the toughest in terms of quietness in church. I’m sure your little one does great! You’re a good mama. :)

  • Our church is at 11.30 here (with sunday school from 10.15), but when we lived in England there was a family service at 9.30. I know what you mean about having the whole day ahead, but not sure my teenager would cope getting up before 9am.

    Peas! I have used the rest as in-church snacks, but never peas :)

  • mlearley

    Our church has two services a 9am and 10:30am. We actually teach Sunday School during the first service, so we go to the worship service at 10:30. This is probably our last year of teaching so we might start going to the 9am service. There are less people and like you said the crowd is a little older. Plus we’d have the rest of the day.

    • Our church school takes place during the week, so we don’t have to work around that in our scheduling… I probably wouldn’t mind the 10am one so much if it weren’t so incredibly crowded! Now, that’s a GOOD problem to have, in that it means lots of people are going to church. But I get stressed out by the crowds. ;)

  • We go to the very last mass of the morning… 12:30. Sundays are the only day we can sleep in, so we take advantage of this, while still making sure to go to mass. I’m not a morning person, so I can’t imagine going to 7:30am mass… but I’m glad it works so well for your family. :)

    • Oh, I know the idea of 7:30 Mass is not at all appealing to those who aren’t early birds! Me? I’m good at that hour, but you’re not getting anything useful out of me in the late evening hours. ;)

  • Marcia

    At our church, we have Mass at 7, 8:30, 10:15, and noon. Our little Boo has been attending 8:30 since she was an infant, and has NEVER complained about getting up on Sunday. She loves going to church.
    Two of my sisters in law are in the music ministry, and I lector, so it is much easier for us to all attend the same Mass. My mother in law and husband keep an eye on Boo, then after Mass, my MIL takes us all out to breakfast.
    The only problem we have is that Boo refuses to go to communion with me. It’s not a huge deal as we sit in the second row so I can keep an eye on her while I’m receiving communion. She just doesn’t like to be touched on the head when the extraordinary minister of communion is blessing her!

    As far as amusing songs – I have to share this with you. Boo was about 18 months old when Lent rolled around. When we “put away” the Gloria…..yeah, well, she SCREAMED about “wrong song, wrong song” I had to take her out into the vestibule and sing it with her. To this day, (she’ll be 4 in a few weeks), she is VERY attached to it, and will sing it most of the afternoon.

    • Oh, I LOVE the story of your little Boo and the Gloria! And I must say I am incredibly impressed that she was so aware at such a young age! My kids love, love, love to sing the songs from church throughout our day. And, really, how could I complain about that, right? ;)

  • Mary

    We go to 9:00 Mass. Our church has a 7:30, but we are rarely up before 7:00. We homeschool, so I’ve never had to get kids up and out of the house at any particular time. The 9:00 and 10:30 Masses have most of the families, so it’s nice to go then and see our kids’ (and our) friends. I’m just glad to have so many options – there is also a noon Mass and one Saturday at 5:00 (and at 6:30, though it’s in Spanish, so Wes wouldn’t understand it all, but it’s the same Christ, right?!). No matter what else is going on in our lives, there is always time to worship with our community.

    • We, too, have a lot of options, Mary, and I’m always grateful for that. I do love the option of a Saturday vigil… there was a season (when our Irish twins were both babies) that that fit the best with our routine. And- yes!- while we may not all speak the language, it is the same Christ. (And one of the beauties of Catholicism, in my opinion, is that we still generally know what’s happening even if we don’t speak the language. :))

  • I so appreciate this perspective. I have a completely different experience on a Sunday morning. My husband is the pastor, so he leaves before the rest of us are ready. I am finally at a place where I have the kids clothes ready to go the night before. Sunday morning has become a sweet time for us as we all work together to make it to Sunday school at 9 AM (we walk across the parking lot to church!). The kids are all in the same class and then our worship service is at 10. The 2 year old goes to nursery and the older two are with me until a children’s message and then they go to children’s church. Most people stay after church for a coffee time and conversation with our “family”. I LOVE Sundays!!!!

  • Wow. It’s true, when you go early, you get done early.

    We get to church at 8:30 and stay till about 12:30. It’s a long day! :) But we love it!

    a

  • I love that! Our first mass time is 9 – I wish we had an early one too!!

  • I stumbled upon your blog today, and I have to say thank you! It is so refreshing to “meet” another Catholic mother that can talk comfortably about religion and faith without coming across as preachy or holier-than-thou. I love my 9am mass with my toddler by my side. He needs a full snack cup in hand and perhaps a little pencil and paper to keep him happy, but he loves to sing and the music gets him through most of it.

    • So nice to have you here, Alexis, and thanks so much for commenting! The music is a total lifesaver when you have a toddler with you. There are about 3 really “tough” times during the Mass, I always say, and the music and the kiss of peace are two of the easiest (at least for our family!)

  • Celine

    Our Church use to only have a 10am service. Now we have 2 services 9:30am and 11am. I would much prefer an earlier service time as we are up early every day of the week and find it harder to get out of the door if I have had time to get into doing other things. That is usually why we go early and help set up (our church meets in a school so everything has to be set up and taken down each week).

    • Oh, I understand this, Celine! Even when we went to 8:30 Mass (at a different church), I would have time to “hop online” and, well, we know how that goes… ;) Since we have to kind of hustle to get out the door now, it actually keeps me much more on-task!

  • I love 7:30am Mass as well. I have trouble fasting for a later Mass as we usually eat breakfast by 6am during the week. My husband is involved with RCIA this year and they want everyone to attend the 9:30am Mass and sit together in the two front rows. I think we will end up having to attend separate masses.

    • Oh, I can see how your body would get used to eating early like that– that really WOULD make it harder, for sure. The only time I can remember really struggling with fasting was when I was nursing… I was forever starving for a few months, there. ;)

  • I admit that while I often have to wake David back up just to leave our apartment by 9 to get to church for Sunday School … I might consider converting to go to church and be back by 8:45! ;)

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