An average Sunday (or Saturday vigil) Mass takes about one hour. For those of us with young children, it can sometimes seem like much longer than an hour. Our child has been a blessing to us in many ways, one of which is that he is typically very good during Mass and other church celebrations.
"But Jesus said, "Let the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to Me; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." Matthew 19:14
I like to joke that he is an old pro at going to Mass, as he has been going ever since he was in my womb. In fact, before I received a positive “Yes” on our home pregnancy test, we went to a special procession for St. Joseph at our church and I remember praying to God that if it was His will, to give us a healthy, happy and loving baby. I’ll never forget that Friday evening, nor the Sunday morning on the following week when we finally received a positive result. It just so happened to be Mother’s Day as well.
Ever since, our child has attended Mass with, us except for the first few weeks of his life when he was still very little and it was in the height of cold and flu season, therefore, we wanted to shelter him from any possible exposure to illness.
Going to Mass as a family is something that we look forward to each week and for the most part, our little love has behaved rather well. The wonderful priest that married my husband and me gave us some advice when I was pregnant. He said to try to avoid taking our child to the back of the church, or outside, or anywhere else when he fussed. He said that children can train their parents and if we removed him from the Mass each time he fussed, it would almost be like a reward. Instead, he suggested, we should try to calm, bounce, shush or feed (or all the above) right there in the pew.
Of course, there are extenuating circumstance where we would want to remove him as to not disrupt the Mass or our fellow parishioners. There were only one or two instances when he really lost it and I raced to the back of the church to outside of the glass doors where he could recoup and get back to his happy self. Looking back, this was around the time that my poor child was cutting several teeth.
Even though our child is an old pro at going to church, I still like to be prepared if he becomes agitated, hungry, thirsty or just plain bored because when he gets angry, he gets angry! So, I created a “Mass Survival Kit” that includes items to appease the savage, little beast, I mean my loving son.
Hopefully this Catholic Mass Survival Kit will help you and your family get to church and stay in church until the Concluding Rites. Do you have a survival kit? Please share any helpful tips or tricks with us on Facebook.
As always, thank you for reading. God bless you and may the Blessed Virgin Mary be with you always!