instruere...inlustrare...delectare Disputations

Monday, July 18, 2011

The particular needs of the listeners

Speaking of hard topics, my parish has a new pastor, and at Mass yesterday, just before distributing Communion, he spoke from the altar about the large number of parishioners ("-- adults; I sort of expect it from teenagers") who leave immediately after receiving Communion. Apart from great need, we should, he said, remain until the end, and not leave ahead of the cross; and if we do leave earlier, from great need or otherwise, as custodians of the Blessed Sacrament we ought not to leave the church with It still in our mouths.

So, that's where we are as a parish. Abortion? Social justice? We don't even know how to eat!

[As for how the message was received, my wife did say afterwards that she felt scolded, though we customarily leave after the cross (fleeing dreadful recessional songs counts as great need, right?). Still, as hard lessons go, "Don't leave early" is a good place to start; at the very least, most counter-scolders will probably be gone before the priest gets to the vestibule.]