Whoever designed my church is an idiot.
I don’t mean Whoever designed my Church. That would be Christ. I mean whoever designed my church building.
This nameless person apparently decided the best place to put the restrooms was on either side of the altar.
So, if the altar server isn’t paying attention, what you might hear when the Host is elevated during the Consecration is not the pleasant tinkling of bells but rather the whoosh! of a toilet flushing. Oh, the restroom is a distance away and the door is closed, but you can still hear it.
That’s what you call an untimely interruption.
I’ve heard of Masses being interrupted by protestors shouting slogans and throwing condoms at parishioners. Frankly, I never expected to be at a Mass that was interrupted by anyone.
But it happened.
It started out as a normal Mass and stayed like that all the way through Communion. Then, during that time of silence and reflection after receiving the Eucharist, a man stood up and started loudly reading from his Bible.
The verse he chose was Matthew 6:6. “When you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”
I guess he thought we were not following the Bible by having public prayer. No prayer, apparently, should be done except in one’s room at home.
[SIDENOTE: If you’re going to be this strict about how prayer is done, then you would also have to follow what Jesus says in Matthew 6:9-13 by praying nothing but the Our Father—and of course praying that only in your room. After all, in verse 9 Jesus says, “This is how you should pray.”]
That man should have checked out the verse before Matthew 6:6: “When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others.” (italics mine)
Of course we don’t publicly pray at Mass to be seen by others. What would be the point of that, since those others are also praying the same thing we are? Are we supposed to garner admiration by not standing out?
This guy, however, was making sure he was seen by others.
Perhaps he should have continued reading his Bible until he got to the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead—and how He prayed in public right before he did it (John 11:41-42).
Well, the ushers got the man to leave. I have a sneaky suspicion that he went home and told his friends he had tried to give us the Word of God, but we not only wouldn’t listen but kicked him out of our church. Nope, we just wouldn’t listen to what the Bible has to say.
And, if he complained like that, I’m sure he didn’t mention those four very public scripture readings we had during the Liturgy of the Word.