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  #1  
Old Feb 24, '13, 7:00 am
PrairieDawn PrairieDawn is offline
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Default WHo is the cry room for?

Our parish cry room has been taken over by mostly elderly, dour people who make it clear that crying infants are not welcome. I believe this may be because the acoustics in the church proper make it hard to hear for some people, and the speaker system may make it easier for them to hear the Mass in the cry room, but as our parish priest has recently made it clear that unruly (that is, nonsilent) children are not welcome, it has become an issue for the mothers of babies and toddlers.

Complicating the issue is that our parish priest has also begun to single out parishioners whose lives believes he must criticise publicly--these parishioners have also begun attending in the cry room as a sort of "Catholic time out" or room of shame (the ones that haven't simply stopped attending.

What many of us have begun to do is go every other week, switching off which parent attends. (We take our older children and leave the baby). Our parish priest appears to have noticed this trend, because he has tken to reminding the parish every week that not attending Sunday Mass is a mortal sin. We live in a rural area, so changing to a parish would necessitate a long drive.

What is the right thing to do in this situation?
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  #2  
Old Feb 24, '13, 7:11 am
DaveBj DaveBj is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

Ohfercryinoutloud!

(Oops! Did I seriously just say that? )

First of all, those of you with children should go to your pastor and apprise him of the fact that the cry room is being appropriated by people who do not belong there. He should then make it clear from the ambo what the purpose of the cry room is. Whether he does that or not, those of you with children should go ahead, populate the cry room, and totally ignore the comments from non-parents who have been trying to take it over. They can suck it up and either tolerate the crying children, or go back into the sanctuary where they really belong.

Full disclosure: I am pushing 65 from the wrong side and have hearing problems. Sometimes, with the acoustics in the sanctuary, it sounds like the priest is speaking in tongues. But I wouldn't think about going to the cry room.
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  #3  
Old Feb 24, '13, 8:35 am
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Allegra Allegra is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

How far of a drive is it?
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  #4  
Old Feb 24, '13, 8:41 am
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Polycarp1 Polycarp1 is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

Jesus said "Unless you become as little children..." Maybe your seniors have finally made it!
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  #5  
Old Feb 24, '13, 8:43 am
Fr P Fr P is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

I like the idea of the crying room being the place where adults who don't like children go.

I got rid of the crying room in my current parish as it was a cold unwelcoming place at the back of the Church. It seemed to encourage parents to go there to chat regardless of whether their children were distressed or not.

Instead I dedicated a side chapel which is enclosed and has a much better view of the sanctuary to families and children. The Chapel does have a side altar, a shrine to the Sacred Heart and candle stands. I have been asked to remove the candle stands to make it safer for unruly toddlers, but I have refused, reminding the parents that they need to take responsibility for their childrens behaviour and safety.

The advantage of the side chapel is that parents actually have to come into the church, whereas the old crying room was accessed via the entrance foyer.

This is a particularly sensitive issue as everyone has needs and sometimes they are incompatible. I however, consider the children to be more important than adults, so prioritise there needs wherever possible. I hate the idea of children being banned from Church, it reminds me of Mark 10:13-16 "Let the little children come to me, do not stop them!"
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  #6  
Old Feb 24, '13, 8:52 am
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Julianna Julianna is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

In our parish the seniors go to Mass at the wee hours or the 11:00. Most of the family masses are at 9:30 or 5:30 on Sat. I learned "real quick" which Mass to attend with my then 2 yr old daughter.
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  #7  
Old Feb 24, '13, 9:13 am
ksenja ksenja is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

I may sound stupid but I have no idea what a cry room is. Is this a room for babies? In church? I never heard of it nor seen it. Is this an American thing or is it present in other parts of the world too?
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  #8  
Old Feb 24, '13, 9:20 am
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corsair corsair is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

Sorry, I'm not sympathetic to parents. My wife and I raised 7 children and have worn out the carpets taking rambunctious kids in and out of church. We have never used the cry room. For the most part all of my kids learned to be quiet by the time they were 5 years old.
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  #9  
Old Feb 24, '13, 9:42 am
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Julianna Julianna is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

Quote:
Originally Posted by corsair View Post
Sorry, I'm not sympathetic to parents. My wife and I raised 7 children and have worn out the carpets taking rambunctious kids in and out of church. We have never used the cry room. For the most part all of my kids learned to be quiet by the time they were 5 years old.
I was quickly reminded that the parish has a "nursery" in the parish hall for infants through age 5, and I should use it.
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  #10  
Old Feb 24, '13, 10:00 am
Lisa1967 Lisa1967 is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

Wow, that's frustrating. Can't the cry room be reserved for parents and children, and those hard of hearing could be offered amplifiers?
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  #11  
Old Feb 24, '13, 10:05 am
VeritasLuxMea VeritasLuxMea is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PrairieDawn View Post
Complicating the issue is that our parish priest has also begun to single out parishioners whose lives believes he must criticise publicly--these parishioners have also begun attending in the cry room as a sort of "Catholic time out" or room of shame (the ones that haven't simply stopped attending.
Was I the only one to notice this part? I don't even know what to say to that..
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  #12  
Old Feb 24, '13, 10:22 am
Bob Aliano Bob Aliano is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

Our church doesn't have a cry room but it does have a large narthex that some parents use for that purpose; there are large window and speakers there so the effect is the same, just roomier. I've noticed over the past few years more and more parents staying in church with loudly uncomfortable children either crying or banging toys and car keys on the pew, it gets so bad one cannot hear the priest the prayers, readings or gospel so I don't blame adults retreating to a cry room just to get away from the noise. We do have a well staffed, barely utilized nursery. I chalk it up to rude parents forcing too young children to attend with no attempt at instructing the children or consideration for those around them.
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  #13  
Old Feb 24, '13, 10:23 am
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Cathhsmom Cathhsmom is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fr P View Post
I like the idea of the crying room being the place where adults who don't like children go.

I got rid of the crying room in my current parish as it was a cold unwelcoming place at the back of the Church. It seemed to encourage parents to go there to chat regardless of whether their children were distressed or not.

Instead I dedicated a side chapel which is enclosed and has a much better view of the sanctuary to families and children. The Chapel does have a side altar, a shrine to the Sacred Heart and candle stands. I have been asked to remove the candle stands to make it safer for unruly toddlers, but I have refused, reminding the parents that they need to take responsibility for their childrens behaviour and safety.

The advantage of the side chapel is that parents actually have to come into the church, whereas the old crying room was accessed via the entrance foyer.

This is a particularly sensitive issue as everyone has needs and sometimes they are incompatible. I however, consider the children to be more important than adults, so prioritise there needs wherever possible. I hate the idea of children being banned from Church, it reminds me of Mark 10:13-16 "Let the little children come to me, do not stop them!"
Fr. P,
You had me until you got to the part about refusing to remove the candle stands. May I make an appeal for reconsidering that stand? My older 3 children were born within 3 1/2 years. My husband at the time was active duty military. There were many a Sunday Mass that I spent taking the 3 kids by myself to church. If the cry room had candle stands and I had heard your response about safety and behaviour, I don't know if I would have persevered in taking them to mass when my husband was not available to go with me. I only had 2 hands and 3 kids with the youngest being a newborn. Please reconsider and check to see if there might be legitimate reasons why the candle stands might need to be moved while children are in there during Mass.

Thank you and God bless.
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  #14  
Old Feb 24, '13, 10:41 am
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Jennifoo Jennifoo is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Polycarp1 View Post
Jesus said "Unless you become as little children..." Maybe your seniors have finally made it!
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  #15  
Old Feb 24, '13, 10:52 am
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tabycat tabycat is offline
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Default Re: WHo is the cry room for?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ksenja View Post
I may sound stupid but I have no idea what a cry room is. Is this a room for babies? In church? I never heard of it nor seen it. Is this an American thing or is it present in other parts of the world too?

A cry room is a room that parents can take their young children and babies that are 'acting up' or crying and the parents can still attand mass. I don't know if its just an American thing or not. I do not think that all Catholic Churchs have a cry room.
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