The Mass // How to Pray the Creed

Matt 16:13-17; THE MASS PDF Link

So, we’ve heard two readings, sang a responsorial psalm, heard the Gospel, and listened to a homily by now. How do we respond? Why, we stand, united, and state the “Creed”, of course. But have we given any thought to what we are saying we believe in?

Just like the pledge of allegiance, or the National Anthem, when we stand reciting The Creed, through our vocal cords and body language, we are showing that we believe in, stand for, and would defend what we are saying. That’s a big commitment. And one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Today, we encourage you to participate in a mediation with us. Ask yourself the provided questions after each statement – what is your answer? Be as honest with yourself as you can be. Journaling this meditation may be beneficial.

  • I believe (Do I trust completely in this? Would I bet my life on this?)
  •  in one God, (just one?)
  • the Father, almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, (Is he almighty? Did he create us and all the things around us? Is he fatherly?)
  • of all things visible and invisible. (Do I believe there are things unseen too?)
  • I believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, (is he THE Christ? Is he my savior? Is he a savior to everyone?)
  • The only begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages, (Is Jesus God or just a human prophet?)
  • God from God, Light from Light, (Is there a trinity?)
  • begotten not made, consubstantial with the Father; , (Is Jesus separate but united with God the Father?)
  • through him all things were made. (Do I believe that Jesus was not created, but participated in the creation of things?)
  • For us men and for our salvation, he came down from heaven. (Do I believe Jesus came to save me? Is he my savior?)
  • By the power of the Holy Spirit (Do I believe in a Holy Spirit? Is that part of the trinity? Does he have power?)
  • He was born of the Virgin Mary and became man. (Was Jesus both God and man? Was Mary really a virgin? Do I believe in the Incarnation?)
  • For our sake, he was crucified under Pontius Pilate, he suffered, died and was buried. (Did Jesus die because he was a criminal or because he died for my sins? Do I believe that his suffering served a purpose for my salvation? Did Jesus really die and was put in a tomb or was it a hoax?)
  • On the third day he rose again (Did he really rise from the dead? Do I believe in the resurrection?)
  • In fulfillment of the Scripture (Is Jesus’ death and resurrection really the fulfillment of the words of the prophets?)
  • He ascended into heaven (Is Jesus really in heaven? Did he really rise or is he still buried somewhere – part of a trick put on by the disciples?)
  • And is seated at the right hand of the Father. (Is Jesus really King in Heaven? Does he really have power?)
  • He will come again in glory (Do I believe in the Second Coming? Will Jesus return?)
  • To judge the living and the dead. (Will I be held responsible for all my sins? Is God a rightful judge?)
  • And His kingdom will have no end. (Will God reign eternally? Do I believe in eternity?)
  • We believe in the Holy Spirit, (Do I believe that the Holy Spirit is also God?)
  • The Lord, the giver of life. (Did the Holy Spirit take part in the creation of man? Does the Holy Spirit give us new life through the forgiveness of sins?)
  • Who proceeds from the Father and the Son (Is there a trinity?)
  • Who with the Father and the Son, he is worshiped and glorified (Does the Holy Spirit deserve as much worship as and is equal to the Father or the Son?)
  • He has spoken through the prophets (Did the Holy Spirit assist the prophets? Was he “active” before Pentecost?)
  • We believe in one holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. (Do I believe in one Church or many? Are all denominations of Christianity in fullness truth? Are all religions “correct”? Is the Church holy and does it promote and encourage holiness? Is it a source of holiness? Is the Church universal (the word catholic means universal)?  Do I believe that the Church thinks all people are worthy of being part of this universal family? Do I believe that Jesus founded this Church, appointing the apostles as its first leaders? Do I believe in the succession of the Church – that there has been an unbroken link of Catholic bishops handing on Church teaching and Scripture since Christ?)
  • We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins (Do I believe baptism forgives our sins? Do I believe in original sin? Do I trust baptism unites me with Christ?)
  • We look for the resurrection of the dead (Will I rise from the dead? Do I believe in an afterlife?)
  • And the life of the world to come. (Is there a heaven? Is there a hell? Do I act accordingly, knowing that I am deserving of whichever place I end up – based upon God’s mercy & judgment?)
  • AMEN. (Amen, another word for “believe”, am I confirming that I believe in all the statements I just said?)

How do we answer these questions? Does it instill more confidence in our faith or bring about some doubts? If confidence, today, thank Jesus for the gift of faith. It is truly a gift! If doubt, today, thank Jesus for the grace of being a part His Church and the ability to learn more about the faith.

Sisters, we want to affirm you – we all have doubts about parts or all of our faith during different times in our life. Today we may believe easily, tomorrow we may have to make a determined decision to believe. Either way – say The Creed, always asking for the faith to believe and hope in these words. For each statement is not just a truth but a blessing that God has given us. It is part of His love story to us. 

How is God speaking to you in this post or today's reading? Enter a comment below or click HERE if you are reading from your phone. (Commenting is optional, but always grace-filled.) Thank you for letting us into your life and for being a part of ours!