Tag Archives: catholic

Perseverance

14 Nov

Today’s lesson during church really hit at the right time for me. I’m not talking about it literally because that message was about something much deeper than this but I’m talking about the lesson of challenges and never giving up – staying the course and it will be ok. It’s not a new thought but after my last post about my fear of having Nate in church for an hour-plus with nothing to help, this lesson/reminder was needed.

Turns out, I was worried, stressed and upset for nothing. (Like usual with me.) Nate did great. He sat next to Andrew and followed and sang along with the readings and music. It was a joy. He did get a little difficult toward the end (wanting to lie on the pew) but overall it was just fine.

But, back to today’s lesson, even if it turned out to be harder than it was, that shouldn’t make me want to run away or give up. I should stay the course. Feisty four-year-old and all.

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Make babies, but don’t bring ’em to church

7 Nov

That’s pretty much how Andrew and I are feeling about our church right now. This is not the first time a Catholic church has made us feel this way either. We’re disheartened and it all stems from the perceived attitude our church has toward children.

Here’s why: after church today, we were very nicely told that, “Father doesn’t want the children to color or draw in church anymore.” The usher said even the most neat kids can accidentally color on the pews. Ok, sure. But now what?

Coloring has been the one way we’ve been able to keep Nate calm, quiet and well-behaved in church. He colors during certain parts of church and participates in the prayers, peace and singing. He’s too little at four years old to be able to pay attention – it’s hard enough for some adults to – and there’s no children’s liturgy or nursery at our church. He’s supposed to just sit there without making a peep for an hour. Right.

The congregation has already been continually reminded about the “cry rooms” for noisy kids. You might as well not even go to church if you have to be in there. You can’t hear anything that’s being said and kids get the idea that it’s ok to talk loudly in church.

It’s just so disheartening because we are trying to do something positive for our family, as a family. They should be encouraging that, not making it more difficult. You’d think they’d be happy that a young couple is bringing their children and their monetary support to the church. I mean, they have this big “Catholics Come Home” campaign going on now and they are always reminding us that the children are the future of our faith and we need to be tithing as the Bible says. I know it’s wrong but, right now, I feel like making my children the future of another faith and informing this church that my tithe is going to find a place that practices what they preach. (We were born and raised Catholic but I went to Greek Bible school, a Baptist Pre-School and adult Bible study and Nia went to a Methodist Pre-School. We are not boxed in our denomination.)

I just want to be a part of a church community that is genuinely happy that youngens are in the pews or at least provides a Sunday school/nursery where they can learn about the Bible age-appropriately. Somewhere where I’m uplifted and leave feeling a little better about things. Not helpless and unwanted – for coloring inside or outside the lines, no less.

*Editor’s note: Since I wrote this, I’ve received a few comments/concerns and I’d like to clarify that my feelings are not directed toward the entire Catholic faith. We’ve been a part of some wonderful Catholic churches that never made me cry after Mass. The cases I’ve written about don’t always reflect the priest’s attitude either. Once it was an usher. Another time, a member of the church – a church we loved. The last priest of our current church was great toward children, actually picking Nate up and playfully throwing him in the air after Mass. He gave high fives out to the kids as Mass ended. Nate was happy to go to church and wanted to pay attention to what Father was saying. The funny thing is, Andrew and I actually enjoy/learn from our current priest’s homilies. We even recently signed up to volunteer. We are trying and will continue to try – and hope for understanding.

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