This weekend we had Baptismal Masses at our Church.
Masses like these, where we have many visitors, often challenge the patience God wills me to have. Especially when I saw my "church pet peeves" all around me.
For example ... there were many people present who did not respect the Mass. They talked during it, looked at their phones, and seemed to have no idea what was going on.
What I said to myself: It bothers me to no end that these people do not appreciate that they are in God's house and the miracle that takes place here.
What God would probably say to me: At least they came to Mass, which is the first step. Maybe they will be inspired by what they see ... perhaps your patience or helpfulness ... and come back. What are you doing to make sure that happens? Anything?
Then there was the gentleman that arrived during the Liturgy of the Eucharist (!) and wanted all of us to slide over so he could have a seat.
What I said to myself: Sir, it might help to invest in a watch.
What God would probably say to me: He would most likely remind me that there was a time when I would show up for Mass whenever I felt like it (although never that late). Perhaps he would open one of the Missals to Matthew 20 and remind me of the Parable of the Workers.
At this particular Mass, there were two adorable babies being Baptized. As the two sets of parents and Godparents stood on the Altar, only one of them was smiling. The other seven looked like they were thinking about a million other things.
What I said to myself: What a beautiful occasion this is and look at these folks! They look miserable. Did they not read my last blog post?
What God would probably say to me: Here is a mirror. Try using it. And while you're at it read John 8:7.
And of course, what pet peeve list would be complete without the crying baby. We had one at this Mass, and she was crying so loud I could barely hear the Homily.
What I said to myself: How hard is it to go to the crying room? It is the one with the big glass window and all the babies in it.
What God would probably say to me: Open your Bible to Matthew 19:14. My Son did not mind when children interrupted Him ... neither should you. And besides ... that baby crying is the one you are supposedly welcoming into the Church today!
(I pray our forgiving Lord has more patience with me than I do with others!)
God Bless you.