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Children at Mass
Question from L.R. on 01-19-2014:
What do you think about children who bring toys and coloring books with markers and crayons to Mass, sit on the kneelers as if they were cushions and use the pews as a table to color their coloring books and play with their toys? They are not my children and it's very distracting to the point that I cannot concentrate at all.
Answer by Catholic Answers on 01-24-2014:
L.R.--

Your problem is not with the children but with their parents who are allowing this. Since you asked my opinion, I do not like it any better than you do. Children should be taught to pay attention to the Mass. A children's missal can be helpful for giving them a way to follow along. I also do not have any problem with a single quiet religious toy, like a saint doll, to keep the child occupied during the homily. But, as you have found out, toys that distract the child from the Mass not only distract the child from his purpose in being there, they also distract everyone else also.

That said, I'm afraid there is really nothing you can do about this. If you are unable to ignore the situation, I can only recommend that you change your seat once it is clear that the parents are going to allow their children to treat the pews like a desk for their personal seatwork.

Michelle Arnold
Catholic Answers


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