Holy Family Catholic Church
Guidelines for Mass Intentions
Priests may offer Mass for anyone, whether living or dead (canon 945 §1). An offering is given freely, by the faithful, primarily out of their concern for the Church and their desire to support its material needs. Mass offerings are gifts to the Church and its priests (can 946). Offerings also give the faithful an added means of participating more closely in the action of the priest.
Due to the demand for such intentions and remembrances in Holy Family Parish, the following regulations will be applied effective immediately:
- According to the policy of the Diocese of Victoria, an offering of $5.00 is requested, for each Mass intention. On Sunday and Holy Days of Obligation, one Mass is reserved for the “Parishioners and Benefactors of the Parish” (Pro Populo).
- Any family may schedule a maximum of three (3) Mass intentions per year with no more than one (1) intention per month.
- A significant number of Mass intentions are often requested following the death of a loved one. We will schedule a maximum of 6 Mass intentions for the deceased. For example; if 18 Mass intentions are received from 6 donors, only 6 Masses will be scheduled on the Church’s Mass schedule. The additional intentions will be offered at a concelebrated Mass, Serra Club Mass, or an off-site Mass, if possible during the year following a death. After that time, see rule 5.
- As a rule, there will be only one Mass intention per Mass. Multiple intentions by the same donor are allowed but two donors with two separate intentions would be the rare exception.
- According to Church law, a parish is not to accept more Mass offerings than can be celebrated within a year (can. 953). Therefore, any excess Mass intentions will be offered to priests, inside and outside of the Diocese of Victoria, who are able to celebrate the Mass intentions (can 954). The time within which Masses must be celebrated (1 year) begins the day the intention is received. (can 955§2).
- Mass intentions are requested through the receptionist at the parish office. Mass intentions for the following twelve months are scheduled no earlier than June 1st of the current year.
- Mass intentions are annually reserved for: the Novena of Mass following Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and All Souls Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
When a person is present for the celebration of the Eucharist, their intentions are brought before God. Each celebration of the Eucharist is for all those present and for the particular intentions and needs of all the Church. A Mass is never celebrated only for a particular intention, but a particular intention can be remembered during the celebration of any Mass. Thus, the Church continues the tradition of Mass offerings.