Why do I bother going Church, to Mass?
The virtue of gratitude helps us experience the interior joy that comes from knowing we are loved by God, without limits or conditions. It is such an important virtue, that God put it at the very center of Christian worship: the celebration of the Eucharist. The perfect way for us to offer a perfect thanksgiving, an infinite act of gratitude in worship, praising God at the top of our voices and throwing ourselves at the feet of Jesus to express our gratitude for the love and mercy that heals us.
That’s why, if we are well and able, we don't stay home and just say some prayers, watch Mass on TV, go to the mountains, and enjoy the view, take the kids to sports competitions, or spend the day shopping. Those are good things, but they ought not to take us away from coming back daily or weekly to offer our thanksgiving. What happens here, in this community and on this altar, is much, much better.
If we come to Church with an attitude of gratitude to God and a joyful desire to worship God and give thanks in the company of our brothers and sisters in Christ, then we won't be overly concerned about the music, the preaching, who's wearing what, who's doing what... although our worship, our liturgical celebration ought to be excellent in every way, our collective failures won't get in the way of our knowing why we are there or our ability to worship and give thanks.
Fr. Blair Gaynes has been in the Diocese since 2008.