Catholic Church Etiquette-(Do and Don'ts at Mass)
Some people may think that Catholic church etiquette, especially mass etiquette is all about the obvious things not to do in church like sleeping, using cell phones, eating, or making noise among other things.
While these are correct and valid points about what not to do in church, the congregation has to remember that not only should they respect the church as it is a holy place but also that they are supposed to act accordingly during mass.
There are various things that are to be done and not done during Mass and here are some of them. Let's begin by taking a look at the things you should do at mass.
Catholic Mass Etiquette- The Do's at Mass
1. Always Fast before MassIt is mandatory that one has to fast at least one hour before receiving the Eucharist. Fasting involves praying and not taking any food as a means of sanctification in preparation of receiving the Body and the Blood of Jesus.
2. Use Holy WaterFor one to identify himself as a Christian, he or she has to be baptized to be a full believer. Crossing oneself with the Holy water serves as a reminder of the baptism that made them a member of Christ’s Church. The crossing with Holy water must be accompanied by a prayer.
3. Men Should Remove HatsIt is important for men not to have their hats on during mass as it is deemed impolite. Taking the hats off is a sign of respect to the church.
4. Silence Is RespectfulAvoiding unnecessary conversations helps to maintain a quiet atmosphere in the church. If children become too loud during Mass and they should be taken outside or to a room connected to the church.
5. Stay for the Entire MassIt is important that the members of the congregation stay in the pews until the end of the recessional hymn. This helps to prevent commotion during the service and if in case of an unavoidable circumstance, one should leave discreetly.
Catholic Church Etiquette- The Don'ts at Mass
1. Avoid EatingA church is a Holy place that should be respected and members of the congregation should not eat during an ongoing mass as it causes a lack of focus among the other members.
2. Dress AppropriatelyIn recent times, women’s clothing has become scanty and they leave nothing to one's imagination. Such types of clothing are prohibited from entering the church as they are a show of disrespect to the church.
3. Use of TechnologyTechnological advancement has led to Bibles being in our cellphones. During Mass, the use of a physical Bible is encouraged since phones are a distraction.
4. Watch Your PostureWhen one comes to Church, they should be devoted to listening and learning during Mass. A person’s body posture shows their devotion to the Mass that is ongoing.
5. Avoid Late ArrivalThere are many circumstances that may cause one to arrive late during Mass. These things should be avoided because arriving late causes disturbance and a lack of peace at Mass.
The Mass Is the Most Important Prayer
The Mass is considered the most important prayer that the church has to offer. It is for this reason that it should be approached with reverence and respect.
There is a lot that happens at Mass, not the least of which is that we are offered the body and blood of our savior. Observing the Catholic church etiquette for Mass can go a long way in making sure that you and others in the congregation get the most out of the experience.