Tradition preserves the memory of an ever-timely exhorta
tion: Come to Church early, approach the Lord, and confess
your sins, repent in prayer. . . . Be present at the sacred and
divine liturgy, conclude its prayer and do not leave before
the dismissal. . . . We have often said: “This day is given to
you for prayer and rest. This is the day that the Lord has
made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.”
is a definite community of the Christian faithful
established on a stable basis within a particular church; the pastoral
care of the parish is entrusted to a pastor as its own shepherd under
the authority of the diocesan bishop.”
It is the place where all
the faithful can be gathered together for the Sunday celebration of
the Eucharist. The parish initiates the Christian people into the
ordinary expression of the liturgical life: it gathers them together
in this celebration; it teaches Christ’s saving doctrine; it practices
the charity of the Lord in good works and brotherly love:
You cannot pray at home as at church, where there is a great
multitude, where exclamations are cried out to God as from
one great heart, and where there is something more: the
union of minds, the accord of souls, the bond of charity, the
prayers of the priests.
The Sunday obligation
The precept of the Church specifies the law of the Lord
more precisely: “On Sundays and other holy days of obligation
the faithful are bound to participate in the Mass.”
of participating in the Mass is satisfied by assistance at a Mass
which is celebrated anywhere in a Catholic rite either on the holy
day or on the evening of the preceding day.”
Sermo de die dominica
2 et 6: PG 86/1, 416C and 421C.
115 CIC, can. 515 § 1.
116 St. John Chrysostom,
3, 6: PG 48, 725.
117 CIC, can. 1247.
118 CIC, can. 1248 § 1.