Thursday, September 26, 2013

Padded Pews and Resignation

Thursday greetings from the sunny Midwest.

A few days ago, while driving home from work, I was listening to a local talk radio station.



The host apparently had attended a wedding in a Protestant church over the weekend and was sharing with the listeners how wonderful it was to be in a church building with lush, padded pews and no kneelers. He himself is a Catholic, as were his two "sidekicks" on the radio show. And all admitted to being regular Sunday church-goers. He lamented the fact that his own Catholic parish church has no padded pews and the kneelers are tough on the knees.

What struck me were the answers he received when he asked his "sidekicks," "Hey are you Catholic? Do you go to Mass on Sundays?" The tone of the answers sounded more like resignation that affirmation. "Yeah, I go." Of course, a large radio audience (and this is a huge radio station with a very large Midwest following) may not be a place for expressing excitement about our Catholic faith, but the responses to his questions just seemed so blasé.

How do you respond to questions about your Catholic faith?

Gotta sing. Gotta pray.
 

1 comment:

Ephrem Feeley said...

An interesting topic, Jerry! Is there a connection between the level of comfort we find in church and our own levels of enthusiasm? Here in Ireland, it is rare to find people that are enthusiastic about their church - where it abounds is in parishes that have a strong sense of community: ones that serve tea or coffee after mass, ones that have a welcoming committee, ones where the money generated in the collection is used wisely and visibly. I have always held that there is a firm connection between the fabric of the church building and the sense of community - it's hard to generate comradeship when people sit in cold, damp churches with paint peeling from the walls, shoddy amplification, poor or non-existant music etc. Perhaps this is what the radio host was referring to. Cosy seat pads imply that those sitting on them are valued...