Sunday, March 16, 2008

Sunday Announcements

Good Morning. Welcome to the Church of Our Lady of the Control Freaks. Before we begin our mass today, a few announcements.

We are a growing parish, and we welcome people of all ages. But those of you over seventy present special challenges for the rest of us. We hereby request that you clean up your act.

Old people will no longer be allowed to nap in the Adoration Chapel. Other adorerers have noticed some of you slipping in a few z's. Not only does your snoring make a racket, but it sets a terrible example for our young people as well. Please consider others when in the chapel.

"Walkers" will no longer be permitted in church. Our aisles are narrow enough without being cluttered up by your contraptions. If you can't walk on your own, please find another way to get to your pew.

The table full of old people who routinely confiscate a personal carafe for Coffee Sundays- you know who you are- will cease immediately. The carafes are not yours and are not intended for private use. If you cannot break this habit we will have to break the table up. This is for everyone's good so please make an effort.

And stop muttering to yourselves. You may be deaf, but the rest of us aren't. We can hear you, and we are sick of it. Shut up.

We will have more announcements on the issue of age-appropriate behavior in church in the coming weeks. Thank you for your prompt attention in these matters.

Have a happy and blessed Holy Week!


Anonymous said...

It IS beginning to feel like OLCF now ISN'T IT? I really love my parish and fear that many good families will begin to go elsewhere. Feeling unwelcome in one's beloved parish is a very sad reality.

Anonymous said...

I think the majority of the families have control over their kids, but then there are the families that don't. I personally am tired of parents thinking their kids are being a blessing and making a joyful noise while the mass is going on. Get over yourselves and all of your little blessings and get up and take them out. They are not being a blessing. I don't think churches have to make these annoucements if these incidents weren't taking place. Teach your kids that it is God's house and if they cannot stay quiet take them to the back of the church. People are not enjoying them.

Anonymous said...

What amazes me is that the people behind these "announcments" do not realize how well the children at OLCF do behave. I travel to other parishes and find many/most of them to be dying...quite literally. There are NO little ones around, maybe a handful at best. Yet at OLCF I would say at any given Sunday the kids out number the adults. That being said the level of "joyful" noise is minimal, not even worth a mention. It is sad that if you were to be visiting OLCF for the first time you would certainly feel as if families with children were not welcome and should look else where for a parish to call home. Gotta love all the virtue being taught!!

Anonymous said...

I remember the Friday last Lent when Jack, the very disabled little boy, was crying at the top of his lungs, and was for the whole service the loudest voice in the Church.

We were all conscious of it. I suppose you could say he "disturbed" our prayer.

I also remember what Father D said to me afterwards. He said Jack was teaching us tonight, he was teaching us about being on the Cross.

Of course kids should behave in Church. But as a father of 1 child who has it very easy in this life, the people at HFC who teach me about being on the cross are the parents raising 4,5,and 6 kids, usually on one income because Mom is putting first things first.

You think these people aren't trying? We can't cut them some slack? We have to give sarcastic announcements about how parents "should refrain from giving their children missalettes to color on" as if the parents had never thought of that?

I would also like to ask the tough guys who are giving these announcements, if they are such tough, law and order, lay-down-the-law, macho men, how come they aren't tough enough to confront the parents of the few kids who are the real problem?

Nope, our tough guys lecture all the parents in the church while hiding behind the pulpit, because that is safer than actually having a frank discussion with the parents who need talking to.

Minnesota nice.

Minnesota chicken.

Richard Vigilante, DIH spouse

Anonymous said...

DIH ... I love Richard! ~ Thanks for props ~ Bible Babe

bb said...

THANK YOU, Richard! Thank you, Susan!

Anonymous said...

way to make a mom of many feel great. Thank You Richard, you made my day! Another bible babe

Anonymous said...

Poor Richard. If only you'd decided to be a priest, just think, you could chase down those scoundrels writing in the missalettes yourself (surveillance camera's perhaps), you could confront all the lazy parents that don't control their children since there is nothing else for a priest to do, you'd be great!

Boy, if only Father D were as smart as you and DIH.

Hopefully none of your parishioners would start a blog that specialized in posting sins of detraction.

Anonymous said...

Well I wouldn't post sins of detraction anonymously. And of course nothing I wrote was in any way a criticism of Fr. D., whom I revere and who is after all the reason we're all here at a parish we love.

Richard Vigilante

Sue said...

I never post anything anonymously. Regular readers know that.
-Susan Vigilante, Desperate Irish Housewife

Anonymous said...

Here's they way I see it... A couple of "adults" have decided to make an issue of the children of HFC's behavior. So they have sent forth the messengers with these "announcments". Now there may be situations that have occurred that need (or needed) addressing. However, these announcments seem to impune all parents with small children. As a parent of 6 kids (typically well behaved, if not I would want to know)these announcements came across to me as complete intolerance of kids. If you don't have a large family you may not know or understand how when in public we are CONSTANTLY getting comments about having six kids.."oh you have your hands full", "how can you afford them", "are they all yours" etc..honestly I can not go anywhere with all my kids and not get some comment. So when our beloved church, a safe haven from society, makes announcments such that they did it is very dissappointing.
It would be sad if a few "adults" ruined the reputation of the parish as being a welcoming place for families with small children.
Please if you see children misbehaving correct their actions and if needed bring them to their parents - we the adults need to act as such.
~Lisa Counts

JC said...

That Lisa lady intimidates me.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Lisa, and all other BBs. (Just for the record, I don't think BB makes you anonymous, being that there are only six of you!)

I just re-read my long comment. I stand by it, but at 48 hours distance I do think the last few lines, written in anger, were uncharitable and unnecessary, and not helpful to our beloved community which really is the finest I have ever belonged to. I regret that bit. I reaffirm the rest.

Richard Vigilante

Anonymous said...

Dear jc and "Poor" anonymous chicken,
If you are going to insult somebody, at least take the paper bag off of your head.
I agree with what Lisa and Richard have expressed. I could not admire two people more.

This whole thing boils down to this: Several families felt that their children were not welcome as a result of two announcements, as well as the locking of the nursery during the fish fries. Could we try to be sensitive to the fact that large families face demeaning comments everywhere they go, based solely on the number of children they have welcomed from God?

I love my parish, and hope that this problem can be resolved.
--Shivaun Biese

Anonymous said...

I don't think it's very mature to walk out on your obligations. For instance, not honoring your commitment to donut Sunday. Obedience is part of our faith so clam up and fall in line.

Anonymous said...

I'd say that "anonymous" posting at 7:52 sounds just like the parish secretary to me: note the pluralizing of the word "cameras" by adding an apostrophe "s" (making it a possessive).
Yep, just the sort of good English I've come to expect from that office.

Margaret in Minnesota said...

I'm a little late to this discussion but I do hope that my being tardy doesn't get me sent the rector's office!

First off, I loved the satire. That, for me, was the best part of this post.

The heated discussion that ensued did not surprise me. We are a thin-skinned people. I don't know, Susan. I remember hearing that announcement and having my inner "child" bristle at the correction. And then I thought, well, if the kids are coloring on the missals then they should stop. No big deal.

Having spent yesterday's Sunday Mass at a different parish where the priest used the entire homily to deliver administrative details (and this during a First Communion Mass), I am counting my blessings at how good we've got it. Really. These little things just don't bug me because the big picture is--as you well know--so very beautiful.

Again, thanks for the smile this morning. And I agree about those carafe-hogs! More for them means less for us. ;)