Monday, August 30, 2010

Gets Me To The Church On Time

Yesterday I subbed for one of the cantors at my old parish where I was a regular cantor a few years ago. It's a large, suburban parish with a newer building, built within the last 25 years. It's a "church in the round" with the organ and choir risers right up front beside the altar, exposed for the entire congregation to see. (it's one of the reasons I hate not having a choir loft.)

Also, from both the cantor podium and the Ambo I have a perfect view of the doors to the Church. (This is the other reason I hate not having a choir loft.) I get to see the parade of latecomers--some coming in as late as the homily. Before I go on, I am well aware that everyone, including me, has been late one time or another to Mass; we don't make a habit of it, but sometimes it just can't be helped. I'm not talking about those few people rushing in clearly out of their usual character.

I'm talking about those several dozen individuals and families sauntering on in like they were at a casual lunch buffet. The worst was the one in flip flops, fwap-fwap-fwapping in as Father began his homily. From right up front there, for as long as I can remember, it was the same faces over and over again. Similarly it's the same issue after Communion with the dine-and-dashers.

I notice this when I'm in the pews, too. My husband and I occasionally attend the 5:30 pm Sunday Mass, and are just beside ourselves at how many people--all the same ones, by the way--trot in late then. You mean you can't get to Mass on time at 5:30 PM??  Mass times don't change. Church buildings don't randomly move every week. What in this world is so much more important than worshiping your Lord? 
 

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

AMEN my sweet sister!!!!!!!! we have the habitual 15 minute late-comers also.....uggggh. then, if father is right in the middle of the gospel reading, i, as an usher, have to find seats for these families with two or three screaming kids in tow.....and of course, as Catholics do, all the back of the church is filled. so, during the gospel reading, where real worshipers need silence to "take in" the message, we have to trot all the way to the very front, where all the empty pews are at....seriously folks, gina is correct...has the times of mass or locations of the parish you've attended since you were young EVER changed those times?????? seriously, get you ass out of bed a half hour earlier so the parishioners who REALLY want to be at mass don't get distracted by those who just think they NEED to make an appearance once a week, for looks......love you gina, janet

Gina said...

Hello, alarm clock?

Anonymous said...

hi again my sweet sister, just last week, while being an usher, i was discussing with another usher about another very disturbing trend in todays modern family allowances of improper mass etiquette....BATHROOM BREAKS for children.....seriously, every single mass and every single week, the very same five or six children go skipping or running down the isles giggling (usually during the gospel reading or fathers homily)to go to the bathroom. it wouldn,t be so bad normally, but these SAME children do this AT LEAST three or four times during ONE mass....common' folks, really????? gina, i don't know about you, but when i was young, i wasn't even allowed to turn my head to look around to look at people, let alone have the audasity to need to pee!!!!! i think if i got up only once, dad would have thrown me right through the cement wall, let alone three or four "disturbances" to other worshipers.....seriously folks, grow a pair, and learn who is the parent and who is the child, and sit their pretty little butts in their seats.....its called courtisy, respect, reverance, politeness, etc....yes parents, you ARE permitted to be the ADULT in your family, so act like it for fifty minutes a week. can you handle that?????
love you gina, janet

Gina said...

Janet, this is another one of those issues that just pee's me off! HAHA Pun totally intended. Parents, make your kids go before you leave the house for Mass, and tell them to HOLD IT. Sorry, their bladders aren't so delicate that they can't hold it for 45 minutes.

Robin Marie Therese said...

Ok sweeties, I must say as a mom of three boys, its not always that easy. When little ones just learn to go to potty, there often isn't time to have them wait. And often, they don't recognize the urge earlier. You never know with kids. I will say that I would not let them run nor skip nor giggle, nor go alone. But sometimes, as a parent you gotta do what you gotta do and I know Jesus understands that. Our deacon and priest always tell us we would rather have them here. I undersand what you are saying, but it is very stressful as a parent to have young children in Mass, but also very important. Janet darling, I know you wouldn't be talking about my little guys!!!Love you both dearly!

Gina said...

I think it's pretty safe to say that Janet was talking about those tweens and teens..not about little ones---the little ones can't help it! But those teenagers....they'll hold it through a two-hour movie, but Church? NEVER! HA.

I've only seen you at Church once, Robin, butt that one time your little ones did just fine--says a lot about you and your husband, and how important Mass is to both of you. I hope others that have the opportunity to witness your family get the message!!!! LOVE!!!!

Robin Marie Therese said...

thanks gina! We try,but it is a battle sometimes.

Anonymous said...

hi gina and robin,
your boys are awesome...and where better to hear the beautiful sound of a childs laughter and innocence than with GOD in his house... gina is correct. it is the "tweeners", and even late teens that are the ones. they get up to leave four times an hour out of boredom and disrespect. i mean really, if ya gotta go, you gotta go.....i know that better than anyone. hahaha. but your boys are babies still, and you go with them.....big difference between a two or four year old fidgeter and a fifteen or eighteen year old "undiciplined rudeness".......your boys do awesome, by the way. i even toss them the occasional wave or kiss when i am at your mass. don't worry about your family. they will learn well enough when they are older, because you and chris do know who the parents are.......i love you my sweet sister...janet

Robin Marie Therese said...

Thanks Janet!

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