EWTN Catholic Q&A
Church and hall
Question from Wondering on 01-24-2013:

I know of a parish where the church and the hall are the same building. It's just one big area with the altar and a limited amount of pews at one end; and then, when there are social affairs, tables and chairs are set up at the other end, facing away from the altar. Is this appropriate to have the church and the social hall in the same space?

Answer by Catholic Answers on 01-25-2013:


No, it is not appropriate. But, given that the church is already built this way, the parish may have no choice but to make do. I would recommend setting up freestanding screens to separate the social area from the sanctuary. During times when more seating is needed for liturgies (e.g., Christmas, Easter), the screens can be removed and chairs set up behind the pews for overflow seating.

Michelle Arnold
Catholic Answers