Take the Kids, too – in Your Sunday Best!

It’s Friday morning, and if you are anything like me, you are beginning to steel yourself for taking your children to Mass this weekend. Will they be quiet and reverent? Will they cause a scene, ensuring everyone is looking at you as you fumble your way out of the pew and sanctuary? Will they be redirected easily to pay attention to parts of the Mass? Will you be able to get anything out of Mass?

I have heard the stories of parents splitting Mass attendance – so each parent can go and focus on, or participate in the Mass. I have heard other military wives confide – if their spouse is deployed, they don’t take their children, which means they don’t go to Mass themselves. I’ve even been tempted to walk away from Mass and not return. So, I get it!

Take the Kids, too -

This past Easter Sunday, I was sitting in the pew, initially stewing because, although we had arrived fifteen minutes early, there were no seats available up toward the altar. On Easter, those in the front pews were the parishioners who usually attend Saturday evening Mass – and I was unrighteously livid for a hot minute because, “They made sure no families with small children could sit close!”

I then began the weekly task of trying to entice the children to pay attention to the front, instead of each other, or the adults surrounding us toward the back, who were more than willing to play with the little ones! Both of our children – actually, all five children in the pew that day – were phenomenal… it was one of our best family Masses in a long time!

However, as my anger at our pew location subsided, and the rest of the chapel began to work its way through the Mass, I got half-way through the chaplain’s homily before realizing I had no clue what we had read, or what the chaplain was saying.

I felt the familiar internal question,

Why do I make my children come to church?

They are young enough they aren’t required to be here… so, why am I forcing this?

Why do I do this to myself?!

Before I could celebrate my pity-party of one, I felt the answer deep in my soul.

God doesn’t mind that I am distracted through the readings. He doesn’t mind that my focus is on keeping children quiet and redirected. He doesn’t mind that I have no idea what the chaplain said during his homily.

God wants us there – ALL of us there!

He wants us there for the Consecration and reception of His Body and Blood!

We are all there, accompanied by all the angels and saints, to create the Last Supper, and to abide by His instructions to receive Him into our own bodies and souls!

So, I may miss the readings and the homily. I may not fully be paying attention to the words of prayers while I coax our four year old to sing along with us. I may have to run in and out when Little Miss gets loud and frustrated that she’s not allowed to run out of the pew… or, when she bangs her head on the pew.

As difficult as it is leading up to the moment, I am ultimately there for the Consecration and the Eucharist.

The readings and the homily are icing on the cake – and, if my current status of life, as a mother to small, rambunctious children prohibits me from fully paying attention to what is going on in the Mass, it. is. okay! Someday, I will have the ability to focus attentively on Mass, but right now is not that time.

This weekend is Mothers’ Day in the United States. I encourage all my readers to take your children to Mass

Don’t let the whispers, the side-eyes, the children’s shenanigans, your own feelings of defeat, or the anxiety that can come from wrangling small children single-handedly keep you from the most precious moment we have been given in this world – the moment the bread and wine become Our Lord’s Most Precious Body and Blood!

Take your children!

For, as Matthew 19:14 states,

but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.”

Better late than never, I’m linking up with Rosie over at A Blog for My Mom, for her My Sunday Best series! Head over and check out what some other fantastic bloggers wore, and their insights for Mass last weekend, and be sure to check out Rosie’s blog on Sunday for her new link-up every week!

And, even if you aren’t a blogger, but you have Instagram, we’d love to see you participate by showcasing what you wear this Sunday (Mothers’ Day!!!), and putting a little reflection on your Sunday best – just use the hashtag #mysundaybest with @rosiehill425, so we don’t miss you!

IMG_6871
Nothing in this outfit is younger than my daughter. My trusty high-low blue skirt and sandals from Hawaii, nursing tank peeking out (from Motherhood Maternity), and purple tank and multi-colored knitted cardigan from Chico’s.

13 Comments

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  1. Love that tank and cardigan! Such pretty colors!!

    And what’s funny is that I usually find I pay *better* attention when I have the kids with me, because I’m constantly trying to redirect them. When I’m on my own, I get distracted way too easily!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you!!

      And, that is awesome that you are able to pay better attention when you have the kids with you. There have been times where I’ve felt really weird sitting there without the kids… πŸ€” But, I know so many mamas who have complained about “not getting” anything out of Mass because they can’t focus… and, I hope they are inspired to take their children and have them all receive the graces!

      I’ll be adding my linkup when I get to the computer…

      Like

    • Alicia @ Sweeping Up Joy May 12, 2017 — 19:13

      This is sort of true for me…except that without the distraction of the kids, I fall asleep. I can nap any time, any place. Unfortunately that includes Mass…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. We will be taking our grandchildren to church this coming Sunday. It is always interesting. From the perspective of a Grandma….I love to see the kids in church, I don’t mind hearing the kids in church. Without them the church dies…they are the future and it is good “to train a child in the way they should go.”
    I know some people get irate when kids act up in church but they are those who have either never had kids, never took kids to church or have totally forgotten the reality and wonder of children.
    Always remember…you aren’t there for “those people” you are there for God and I bet He doesn’t mind a few shenanigans in the pews.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes!! I agree 100%!!!! We are there for God alone! In the article I linked to at the beginning of this post, I actually quoted one of our chaplains in Hawaii, who used to advise me… “You think the Holy Innocents [the little ones killed in Herod’s quest for the infant Jesus] are sitting up in Heaven all quiet and reverent? No! They are up there slamming down kneelers, rolling their halos on the floor, and being their little selves.” It gave me such beautiful thoughts to help me embrace my own children…

      Although, it does get tiring! πŸ˜‰

      Have a beautiful Mother’s Day, with your grand-babies in church with you!! πŸ€—

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes! I couldn’t agree more… Thank you for sharing this! And I so love seeing everyone’s Sunday Best!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love those skirts with the different level lengths! Thank you so much for this post… this was EXACTLY me last week – totally distracted, grumpy about missing all the “good stuff.” Just for a minute… until I remembered the real “good stuff” – Jesus in the Eucharist! It’s all about that πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Happy Mother’s Day.

    It is important to take children to Mass as it will set them on the right road in life.

    God bless.

    Liked by 1 person

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