I once read that punctuality is about arriving on time and leaving on time. In our country, we are known for being on time for interviews, shows, football games and other events that are considered important and meaningful. Sometimes we arrive very early, even hours, before the event begins because we like to take our time in preparation to enjoy what is coming up.
Being on time for the celebration of the Holy Eucharist is part of our preparation to celebrate the mysteries of Christ. Allowing time for us to find a place to sit, to quiet down our minds and to center ourselves into the mystery we celebrate by cultivating silence and prayer provides a major benefit for our spiritual life. In a culture that seems to be rushing most of the time, it is important also to leave on time, once the liturgy is concluded with the recessional hymn.
Being on time for our celebrations is also part of witnessing our love and commitment to the Lord and to the members of our parish community. It is a way to invite others to take their time to celebrate the Presence of the Risen Lord in their lives.
-fr. Jorge Rátiva, O.P.