“My priest gives these long, boring, irrelevant homilies. Last week he went completely off script and spent most of the time talking about how bad the new Captain Marvel movie is. I read somewhere that Italian men used to leave during homily, have a cigarette or something, and then come back in when they heard him wrap up. Is that still an option? I know homilies themselves aren’t required for a valid Mass, strictly speaking. I could do without my pastor’s.
Colleen F. from Boston, MA”
“Unsought mortifications can purify the soul faster than elected disciplines: bad preaching gives a chance to grow in patience, temperance and, above all, charity. Just as sand in an oyster can become an irritant or a pearl, banality in the pulpit can tarnish a soul or polish it. That depends on humility. During the homily, pray to his guardian angel, and say part of the rosary for his intention. You might also offer him a gift of some classical meditations: the Office of Readings, or the sermons of preachers like Ronald Knox and Benedict XVI. Then pray that he will become a holy borrower.”
–Perhaps those at Catholic Forums will have more suggestions?
(Published in the “Catholic Herald,” this is at https://catholicherald.co.uk/magazine/dear-fr-rutler-how-do-i-get-out-of-holding-hands-during-the-our-father/ )