Why does Mass begin with a procession?

Why does Mass begin with a procession?

THE ENTRANCE PROCESSION IS HIGHLY SYMBOLIC, REMINDING US THAT OUR LIFE IS A PILGRIMAGE TO THE HEIGHTS OF HEAVEN.

During the first few centuries after Christianity was legalized in Rome, the pope would frequently gather with his little flock at various points in the city and then process to a different “stational” church.

The physical act of moving from one place to another gave the faithful a chance to get away from the world and enter into something very solemn and moving.

At the present time, Mass is always preceded by a smaller procession within the church building, as a symbolic gesture that reminds the faithful of their procession or “pilgrimage” to Heaven.

The sanctuary of the church is naturally a place that symbolizes Heaven. Elevated by a number of steps, it helps to lift up our eyes (and hearts) to God.
The entrance procession gives us the opportunity to prepare our hearts for what is about to happen, transporting us from this world into the mystical “Supper of the Lamb,” where we hope to be fully united with God for all eternity.

Philip Kosloski, Why does Mass begin with a procession?
Original in Aleteia.org, February 15, 2020. Used with permission.