I decided to go to church today. I won’t dare claim that I’m religious because I do go to church when I feel like I want to, and that is like a two or three times a month. Despite that, there is something about going to church which relaxes me, and makes me feel all jolly. Probably it’s the hymns, or the sermons. Maybe its the whole service…It’s mysterious, but I always feel more relaxed and somewhat more remorseful after mass.
Sadly, that was a little hard to achieve today.
Usually, I’d be on time for mass. I hate being late, so I always make it a point to come a little earlier. Christmas Eve masses would be an exception, because I have to be in St Joseph’s Cathedral about an hour or more due to limited seats. Anyway, as I was saying… I arrive 10 minutes earlier today, and choose to sit at my favorite spot. There was this couple seated behind me, and I could notice his girlfriend had a tattoo on her back shoulder. Oh yeah, it was visible because not all people understand the church’s request to avoid sleeveless shirts, and dress up decently to church. But that’s the least of my concern because it’s a norm since the church close to never uses the world ‘COMPULSORY’. They always say ‘You are kindly advised‘… how polite and civilized 🙂
So there I was, seated at my seat. I was a little uncomfortable as my jeans felt tight. It was my excess fat bulging, but as the past few weeks, the feeling goes away when the church service started. Mass started with the entrance hymn, and as usual, I sang wholeheartedly. I always loved church songs, so that does explain my actions. When the entrance song was over, and the priest started the opening prayer, a subtle conversation started from the back of my head. I would say it was the devil, but that would be so untrue. Yes, you’ve guessed it, the couple behind me were having their conversation.
Ok-lah… we are all guilty of having small talk in church. I do it, and I bet most of you also do it too. We talk while waiting for the service to start, maybe before receiving communion, and sometimes during the homily. But I bet most of us do not do it through the service. This couple, seated behind me was whispering through the mass. Yes, they were whispering, but with everyone keeping silent… their lively conversation was going great. While the rest stood up to sing, they were still chatting away. At some point, I felt like turning to them and say: “Guys, if you want to chit chat, can you please go to a coffee shop or something“, but I’m a patient man, and the church service did help calm me down and keep my peace.
I left them alone as they talked through the service, while picking up bits of ‘kamek, kitak, kenak nya?” from their conversation. It’s not that I intend to ear drops, but how can I close my ears, when I also wanted to pray?
My point is, if you come to church to talk or chit chat, better just stay away. The church is a place to pray, and it really annoys most people that you are trying to have a conversation in the middle of the mass. In fact, I bet you could talk better if you opted to go to a coffee shop or a park.
I don’t know what others may think, but I always believe that when you come to church to pray, you must be sincere. If you come for the sake of coming, and end up chit chatting… what’s the point?