Go to any daily Mass and you will see a lot of retired people and stay at home moms. Why? Perhaps it's the times of those Masses.
I felt very called to write this article because while working at home during COVID, I realized that suburban Mass times cater to those who do not work professionally 8-5.
Now I am a middle manager who works ~50 hrs a week. That's the typical professional life. Rarely do we work 40 hrs anymore. I typically work 7:30 to 5 or 5:30 each day, and only ONE church in my vicinity had a Mass at 7 AM. ONE. That is baffling to me, and disheartening.
It's interesting, downtown in the city you will see lots of younger working people at daily Masses because the times are earlier and fit their schedules. In suburban life, not so much. It's mostly the retired, non-working, and stay at home mom population.
And we wonder why younger people aren't there!?
While there's nothing wrong with that, I wonder if the Church is missing an opportunity with its other populations -- the people working in secular life -- who need the strength of the Eucharist to get through each crazy business day (at least I do).
In my suburb, there's a ton of industry and business and virtually NO Masses that cater to the working professional's schedule. What an opportunity lost to engage people in daily Mass.
A few times I have attended a 7:30 PM Monday night or Thursday night Mass that is further from my home, and I am astounded by the number of people there of all ages. It occurred to me that I do think people have a hunger to go to daily Mass. I just don't think daily Mass times usually fit their needs.
So pastors, please consider changing your Mass times to fit the needs of your younger parishioners and working professionals. Maybe a few earlier, noon, or evening Masses each week please? And if you are resisting that proposal, maybe you should ask yourself why? Is it because your convenience or preference? Is it because your older population is "set in its ways"? Are you missing opportunities to gather more of the flock?
I think so.
We hunger for daily Eucharist too, and we are your sheep, but I'm sorry, your Masses don't fit our schedule and work demands.