Guidelines for Requesting Mass Intentions at St. Gertrude Church
The practice of offering Masses for others ― living or deceased ― is a long standing tradition in the Catholic Church. We find not only the origins of this practice dating to the early Church but we also clearly recognize its importance as it is usually considered that special graces are obtained for whom the Mass is said. When we face the death of someone, even a person who is not Catholic, to have a Mass offered for the repose of their soul and to offer our prayers are more beneficial and comforting than any other sympathy card or bouquet of flowers. To have a Mass offered on the occasion of a birthday, anniversary or special need is appropriate, beneficial and appreciated.
According to Canon Law, we are required to fulfill intentions within a year. This practice of requesting Masses is so popular at St. Gertrude Parish that Masses offered in the Church are scheduled out many months in advance. We have enacted the following guidelines to allow as many parishioners and friends as possible to offer intentions.
Please read the following guidelines carefully:
- We have two options as to where the Mass may be offered:
- Church: The intention is assigned a specific time and date and will be printed in the bulletin the week prior.
- Dominican Friars: These are not public Masses and will be said by one of the friars in the order they are received. They are generally said within the next few months. If the Friars receive an intention for a large number of Masses they may send some of the intentions to the Dominican Mission Office for distribution to other Dominican priests who will be able to celebrate these Masses within the year.
- Masses in the Church can be scheduled up to 51 weeks from the current date. This will allow for family members to request a first anniversary Mass for the recently deceased who have their funerals at St. Gertrude.
- We can only accept one intention per household per month to be offered in the Church. This limitation does not apply to Dominican Friar Masses.
- We cannot have more than one request for the same intention in the same week in the Church.
- Requests are honored on a first-come, first-serve basis.
- A $5 stipend, as determined by the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, is to accompany each Mass request. You may give more if you wish. However, no one will be denied an intention because of inability to pay.
- There may be only one name per intention. This is according to Canon Law. Exceptions may be for a husband and wife or an entire family.
- No Mass requests will be taken over the telephone at the Parish Office. We prefer intentions to be requested by stopping in the Parish Office during business hours. If that is not possible, requests and stipends may be mailed in and will be scheduled when received. Please be sure to include your contact information with your request.
- Mass intentions cannot be scheduled for the three days of the Sacred Triduum: Holy Thursday, Good Friday, or Holy Saturday. Mass intentions will not be accepted for the following dates: Christmas Eve, Christmas, Easter, All Souls Day (November 2), St. Gertrude’s Feast Day (November 16), Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day, and Thanksgiving. These Mass intentions will be for the general intentions of our priests and parishioners.
- Mass Intentions will not be rescheduled if a verbal announcement was not heard during Mass. The priest is under the strict obligation to remember the person for whom the Mass is being offered and it is presumed that the priest will offer the Mass as requested. The intention is a spiritual act and its verbal publication neither adds nor subtracts from its validity.
- One Mass every Sunday and holiday must be scheduled for the intentions of our parishioners known as “Pro Populo” (For the People) as required by Canon Law. A Dominican Requiem Mass intention is also celebrated each week.