From Our Pastor – Sept. 24, 2017 Bulletin Message
Just a Reminder…
We certainly do our best to welcome everyone at St. Alphonsus on a regular basis, and that welcome is extended at all times.
When we celebrate the Mass we are engaging in a very public form of prayer, quite different from time spent by ourselves or with small groups, at home or during a walk through North Park, or any time and place that helps you commune with God.
Given the public nature of the Mass, we need to expect that things won’t always be ultra quiet and serene, and that we may be distracted during such times. After all, when Jesus celebrated the Last Supper, there was most likely noise out in the crowded streets as people gathered in Jerusalem for Passover.
However, we also want to avoid being the ones responsible for distracting other people from participating in public worship at its fullest.
The 9:30am and 11:30am Masses on Sunday mornings are typically our most crowded, our most “vibrant”, and at times our “loudest”. While we continue to invite everyone to worship God in the Mass, there have been a few Masses recently when the noise and distraction levels became excessive, even for me.
While I do my best to give folks the benefit of the doubt and every chance possible, I am asking parents of children who may struggle to sit at least relatively quietly during Mass to be proactive in taking your child outside, especially during the nice weather months, before the noise level and distraction become too great. Oftentimes, our doors are open and you can still hear what is going on inside, hopefully giving you and your child enough time to take a breather and return for the remainder of the liturgy. If the weather is poor, please feel free to use the school lobby.
For those who may be distracted, please be patient and aware that we have no idea about the familial situation and challenges that these folks may be experiencing at this point in life. As I said in a bulletin note back in January, I have oftentimes found parents to be embarrassed and apologetic after such incidents. Please know that you are always welcome in the Lord’s House. God IS love and loves that you are here! We all love that you are here.
If you desire a quieter experience of the liturgy, please be aware that the 5pm Saturday evening and certainly the 7:30am Sunday morning liturgies seem to be our Masses with the least distractions (especially the 7:30am).
Please receive the aforementioned with an open heart and an open mind. I love children, and love seeing families at Mass. Yet when I can’t even hear myself say the words of the Eucharistic prayer, I gotta say something.
Yours in Christ,