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May not get a response in time but our pastor's first name is Joseph and I was wondering on the Feast of St. Joseph the worker, May 1st, can we request our pastor to offer the Mass intention in his own honor on his name's feast day, since his name is Joseph, ie, would a priest in his humility refuse to offer a Mass for himself?

  • John, don't priest's (pastors of parishes in particular) celebrate the Mass every day? Your question confuses me. – KorvinStarmast Apr 30 at 13:11
  • @KorvinStarmast I'm not sure, but I think "saying a mass for someone" is not the same as that person just saying mass. – DJClayworth Apr 30 at 13:22
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    @DJClayworth Yes, at many masses there is a bit of "mass intentions" wherein a particular member of the parish, or a previous member, or someone who is suffering greatly, is mentioned during the liturgy; often this mention is pre arranged by friends or family of the one being mentioned. – KorvinStarmast Apr 30 at 13:25
  • A priest refusing to offer a Mass for himself out of humility, would not be showing an example of genuine humility. Priests are in need of prayers just like everyone else. – Ken Graham Apr 30 at 13:46
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    To the close voter. This question is very much so addressed to a specific community: the Catholic Church. It does not need to be closed on the basis of ”a community-specific reason”! – Ken Graham Apr 30 at 13:57
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May a priest say Mass for himself?

The short answer is yes.

There is nothing forbidding such a thing. Personally, I would recommend this. Priests must sanctify themselves and the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is, as Pope St. Paul VI said, the Mass is the apex of our faith. Priests may say the Mass intention for themselves.

There is nothing to prevent a priest from offering a Mass for himself at the request of one of the faithful.

I am presuming that the priest in question is saying the Ordinary Form of the Mass. Nevertheless, I would like to enforce this possibility with an example taken from the missal of the Extraordinary Form of the Mass.

In the Tridentine Rite, priest are permitted to added prayers (collects) to the Mass they say each day for various reasons and/or occasions that may arise here and there. For example a priest may add the collects for the time of pestilence to the Mass he is saying, regardless if it is a Feast Day or not. One of the collects a priest may add to his Mass is For the Priest Himself (Missae Pro Seipso Sacerdote)!

The following example of several collects of the Mass, including the Missae Pro Seipso Sacerdote prayers can been seen on page 463.

Pro Seipso Sacerdotale

In other words, John, go for it! It is totally permitted in either Rite.

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