The Sending

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In today's Gospel reading from Matthew 9-10, Jesus sends out the Twelve to preach, teach and heal. Did you know that at the end of every Mass, you are sent out to do the same? Here's the final chapter of my book, A Minute in the Church: The Mass to help us understand.

The Sending

The Mass ends with a blessing – the Sign of the Cross. But even after this final blessing, the priest or deacon gives what is called the dismissal. The word Mass actually comes from the Latin dismissal, “Ite, missa est.” The dismissal is more than just saying, “It’s okay to go now.” This is a sending out. A sending out with a mission.

There are four different options for the dismissal.

“Go forth, the Mass is ended.”

“Go and announce the Gospel of the Lord.”

“Go in peace, glorifying the Lord by your life.”

“Go in peace.”

You see, for Catholics, the end of the Mass is not really an ending at all; it is a beginning. Having just been fed by the Word of God and the Body and Blood of Christ, we are sent out into the world to share the graces we have just received. After all, why would anyone want to keep this to themselves? Think of it like this: if you just had the most incredible meal of your life, wouldn’t you want to share that with your family and friends? How much more so should it be with the greatest meal in all eternity!?

So as we respond with “Thanks be to God,” we sing a hymn and take Jesus to the world. Amen! Alleluia!

Today's Readings

To help others understand more fully the richness of the Mass, order copies of A Minute in the Church: The Mass today at


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