Mass (liturgy)

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Mass is the Eucharistic celebration in the Latin liturgical rites of the Roman Catholic Church. The term is used also of similar celebrations in Old Catholic Churches, in the Anglo-Catholic tradition of Anglicanism, in Western Rite Orthodox Churches, in Lutheran churches, and in a small number of High Church Methodist parishes. For the celebration of the Eucharist in Eastern Churches, including those in full communion with the Holy See, other terms such as the Divine Liturgy, the Holy Qurbana and the Badarak are normally used. Most Western denominations not in full communion with the Catholic Church also usually prefer terms other than Mass.

For information on the theology of the Eucharist and on the Eucharistic liturgy of other Christian denominations, see "Eucharist" and "Eucharistic theology".

For information on history see Eucharist and Origin of the Eucharist, and with specific regard to the Roman Rite Mass, Pre-Tridentine Mass and Tridentine Mass.

The term "Mass" is derived from the Late Latin word missa (dismissal), a word used in the concluding formula of Mass in Latin: "Ite, missa est" ("Go; it is the dismissal").[1][2] "In antiquity, missa simply meant 'dismissal'. In Christian usage, however, it gradually took on a deeper meaning. The word 'dismissal' has come to imply a 'mission'. These few words succinctly express the missionary nature of the Church" (Pope Benedict XVI, Sacramentum caritatis, 51)


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