By Archbishop Michael Jackels
The Mass is called a sacrifice also because each of us is invited to offer our very selves to the Father as a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving, joined to the sacrifice of Christ.
In one of the Mass prayers, we identify our offering as a living sacrifice, praying that God the Father will recognize the sacrifice of Christ on Calvary’s cross in our own oblation, our own sacrificial offering.
Our sacrificial offering of the gift of self is expressed in our gift of time, talent, and treasure given when the collection basket is passed, which are then collectively symbolized in bread and wine.
If we don’t make a gift in the collection, then we are not represented in the bread and wine that are brought up to the priest at the altar.
And in such a case, our gift of self is not united in the memorial of Jesus’ gift of self on the Cross.
And so, as a result, we become just passive onlookers, silent bystanders during the Eucharistic Prayer, at the end of which we would sound an empty Amen.
And when it comes time for Holy Communion, while we might still go forward to receive, we might not enjoy the full spiritual benefit from the Eucharist.
And without the full transforming effect of receiving Holy Communion, we might have less potential to be agents of transformation in the world.