Sunday Mass Gone Wrong For Me!


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I was thinking of not talking about this incident but the more I think about it, the more upset I get!  So I think after writing about it and with a little reflection over a few days I might get to see it differently or even more clearly…..

I was attending the 1100am mass with the family and because we were early, Madame decided to bring the younger one to the bookshop with her.   So she left her handbag with me, while my elder son decided he needed to go to the toilet first.  I sat down at the pew and decided to say the rosary while waiting for mass to begin.

Then as two minutes or so had passed a gentleman whom I recognized as one who had attended the camp with my elder son sits down in the same pew a few seats away for me.  He then waved to me and said,”I think your elder son is looking for you in the toilet.”  I said thank you but was a little puzzled, was it an emergency?  Do I take the handbag with me, forgo the seats and rush down to see to my son?  I decided since it was only about 1045am that I would dial Madame’s number instead and perhaps whisper to her to tend to Seth.  ( I usually switch off my mobile phone which is already on ‘Silent’ 5mins before Mass starts)

Just as I was entering the number on my mobile a male warden walks up to me and very aggressively tells me that I should get out of the church if I want to use my mobile.  He then stands in front of me and continues to glare at me.  I was a little upset and asked him what his problem was? He just continued to motion for me to leave the church, so I got up and went to the back of the church and he continued to tail me.  Then Madame answered her phone finally and so I asked her to look out for Seth, but she told me that Seth was already with her.  She also wanted to know why I sounded so upset.  I started getting angry when he continued to glare at me while I was on the phone with her,  so I said out loud that there was a  ‘_ucker!’ in front me of who thought very highly of himself and was questioning me on this ’emergency call’ that I was making.  When he heard me saying that, he yelled,” I beg your pardon!”  Of which I retorted, “Are you deaf? or daft!?”  Just then more people started to pour in and I decided that I was after all in Church, so I ignored him and went back to my seat.

He followed me back, tapped me on my shoulder and said,” Brother I think you should step outside so we can settle this.”  That was when I totally lost it, so I pushed him and said “Fine _ucker! let’s go!” “You dare come here and challenge me eh?”  “I will not be bullied!”  He then questioned,” So what you want to do? Beat me up?” That’s when a few others started to try and intervene, but instead of telling them the truth the warden decided to tell them that all he was trying to do was his job and that I scolded him vulgarities for doing so.  I didn’t feel the need to justify myself so all I said was, “So you think you are from some sort of Army of God and that you are justified by challenging me out here to ‘Settle it’?”  We were by then pulled quite a fair bit apart so I started taking deep breaths to try and cool down.   He was led away by a few of his warden friends, so it was time for me to decide whether to go back in or to leave?  I decided to stay after all my kids were in there at the pew and they were innocent of this incident.

Some how word must have gotten to the Parish priest who was saying the homily because of instead of expanding on the Gospel or sharing any encouraging words of wisdom, he decided once again that it was time to set the congregation straight on the rules and regulations of the Church.  We should not and cannot say that it is just between God and I because we are a community and to have communion with God, one must be at peace with least of his brethren. ( there is of course truth in this)   He specifically mentioned a few times that we should follow the instructions of the wardens because they were doing their job for the best of the community. ( Doesn’t matter that without his knowledge they were behaving like thugs.)  And that unless we know scripture like the back of our hand especially the Book of Leviticus I believe he mentioned, then we don’t know what we are talking about.  Do we not see that in Bible we have been chided for our errant ways? etc. etc. ( By this time was not listening any more…..too outraged by it all.)

I am of course not totally in the clear, I could have reacted differently or not at all!  All I will say is that God witnesses all and I will be judged accordingly.  Anyhow the warden in question did come up to me during the peace offering and we shook hands and hugged briefly.  ( Though I am still sore in my heart, I have forgiven him…)

4 Responses

  1. why there are such ‘harsh’ rules ? what if it was a matter of life and death and one needs to use the phone or answer some emergency call? i think that he urgently needs a course in communication! and how to deal with humans… that was really bad of him to just glare and tail u .. tsk tsk.. and couldn’t he have waited till the end of the mass? sigh.

    • Honestly I understand why during Mass there should not be any use of the phones, after all it is only an hour ++ with God and it is a sure sign of disrespect. But this was way before it started and I was going to whisper very softly so as not to disturb others in prayer. Frankly if he had approached me nicely, I wouldn’t have minded at all and would have gladly walked at least to the entrance before even attempting to talk. Instead he adopted the holier than thou attitude not forgetting the boorish and aggresive stance! And after it all, no one else would understand or bear witness to what actually transpired. All they would see is a guy finding fault with the warden for telling him off about the usage of the handphone during Mass!! arrrrgggghhh!!!

  2. Sigh……I do not know if you really want my honest opinion…..or….my support…..I choose to go with honesty.

    First and foremost, may I preface by saying that if I was there by your side whilst this happened, I’d be defending you and my temper…why you know…it could be pretty bad, especially if he had been condescending as I’m sure he was by your description. So I don’t know if I’d fare any better.

    However, whatever the case may be, one must always remember where one is….i.e. in the house of God. Whatever the conflict is…one’s mind when in God’s house must be first and foremost on the respect for God.

    That is to not to say, one should “kow tow” to the wardens. However, I don’t think the vulgarities nor the aggression should have come out. If he had pushed your buttons as he obviously did, weren’t you just as bad?

    Whatever the case maybe, I found it in poor taste of the warden to ask you to step outside to discuss the matter, though I do believe he meant it in the positive way, but I think he ought to have handled the situation better.

    We are all learning to be Christlike everyday of our lives. The wardens are no better. However, if one chooses to be active and undertake that vocation, one should step up and be prepared to go further. Afterall, one is putting oneselves as a “shining” example of Christ. He definitely could have handled his “job” better. I would definitely want all wardens to know this!!! Most wardens take it, with obviously the support of the priests, that “you must do as I say” afterall I’m providing a service and “all” I’m trying to do is my job.

    Why brother…your job is not to act “holier than thou” oooooh nooooo…..your vocation is to aid the congregation in their endeavour to celebrate the eucharist. Is by angering your fellow brethern before mass begins a way of allowing your fellow parishioners an open heart to follow the mass???

    No it is not easy being a warden, I’m sure they are tested every little way, but I must again point out, you chose your vocation….if you are not prepared to fulfill your obligations, then do not step up.

    I go on further by saying tsk tsk tsk to the priest. Are you not “enabling” these “bad” wardens by pointing out the congregation and supporting that the wardens are just doing their “jobs”. Aren’t you supposed to be looking after your flock, which encompasses your parishioners as well. By pointing the finger…..aren’t you ostrazising your parishioners?? Least of all before all the facts are put before you. Could you not have been fairer to point out the failings of wardens as well?

    Could you have not choosen a better time to have your rules and regulations of the Church put forth?

    My darling brother, I have more to say, but scrolling back I’ve taken up enough of your space…..I’m continuing on my blog 🙂

    • Well like I said, let me me judged by Ehyeh accordingly….

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