Cussed at in the Church parking lot


I had a bizarre encounter and I just feel the need to tell someone (hence posting it).

This Sunday, before Mass, a man rudely gestured and yelled at me from inside his car as I was parking my car in the Church parking lot. I have no idea why and I have no idea why it bugs me so much. I feel like I did something wrong, but I can’t figure out what.

The Church is right outside my neighborhood, so my drive there was basically me leaving my neighborhood exit and waiting for the police officer to direct me to go into the Church parking lot (we have a police officer help with traffic flow). No one was behind or in front of me in my neighborhood and I only did what the police told me to do when pulling into the parking lot. So I don’t think I did anything rude on the main road, before getting to the parking lot.

The only thing I can think of is it was taking me time to back into a spot because I have to use my mirrors (I can’t whip into a spot like those with the backup cameras do). A lot of us parishioners back in because after Mass is over, the parking lot is filled with little kids running around and it’s a lot easier to see pulling forward than backing out (especially for me as, again, I don’t have backup cameras in my older car). I don’t want to hit anyone.

I was there well before Mass and before I started to back in a spot, there was no one behind me because I always look before I back in a spot far from the Church (I like to take the extra steps/walk). So it wasn’t like I was going to make him late, wasn’t holding up a bunch of cars trying to park in the first row, and besides, I was already in the process of backing into the spot when he choose to pull into the row I was in.

We both got into the Church with time to spare (15 minutes before Mass started). He was just sitting in a pew when I came in the church. He happened to see me and glared at me, still angry.

I should let it go, I know. But this man was so angry and full of hate towards me (right before Mass we both attended) and I don’t know why.


He may have been having a bad day, and it didn’t take much of anything to set him off. I hope you prayed for him at Mass. If not, pray for him today.


People sometimes get angry. Whisper a prayer that they have a better day and let it go.


Once had a man do the same thing because I wasn’t exiting quickly enough for his taste from the church parking lot. I think maybe one of us didn’t get as much out of Mass that we should have.

I think that’s sad when someone has just been to Mass loses their temper like that. But for the grace of God go I.


Pray for this man and let it go. He may have been having a bad day. He may be mentally ill. His reaction was abnormal and you aren’t responsible for his hangups.


I have met a few people that are of a similar opinion about people backing into the spots, thinking it congests traffic. I never cared one way or another myself, but then I am not one to try and race away as soon as Mass is over.

If it was really a big deal, the parish could post signage prohibiting backing in. That’s what we do where I work.



We have a HUGE church parking lot off a dangerous and busy road. The cops often come out.

And OF COURSE someone has to back in, causing a huge backup and other dangerous situations for both cars and people trying to get into Mass. All for what? To save a few seconds on the way out? If you’re not safe enough to pull out of a spot backward, you’re not safe enough to drive. Your forward visibility, while better, isn’t great, so if you’re worried wait until everyone is in cars.

My priest has tried to address this but we have a more serious problem of people trying to go the wrong way on the one-way. It’s come to the point where the priest had said any parishioner who is a paid or volunteer will be fired if they are caught going the wrong way in an attempt to cut out faster.

And I promise you, you’re not nearly as efficient at backing in as you think…even sans camera.

You do not deserve to be verbally abused, but it dosn’t change the fact that most likely you are in the wrong. It is important you cease this behavior ASAP.


Unless you are posing a safety hazard, try to just let it go. The person could be having a bad day,want to control how others park, judge your motive, or any other reason.


Thanks everyone for the kind words. I did say a prayer for him (and me) when I went into church.

There is no rule against backing into spots and I wasn’t holding up traffic. There was no traffic because it was 15 minutes before Mass. Most people show up 5 minutes before Mass (which is why I go early). Like I said, I specifically looked and saw no one was behind me. He only pulled up to me after I started backing in. He had lots of other options for pulling in, he chose the row I was already in and already backing into a spot.

If pulling out forward when I leave is a little easier than backing out and that makes me a terrible driver. Then I guess I am a terrible driver. But I really think it’s the design of my car and the blind spots. I just can’t see the little kids if they are directly behind me and I don’t have backup cameras. The only time there aren’t kids is when I show up for Mass (I go to the first one usually before most other people are there). As one Mass gets out, another is coming in. Plus there is CCD going on as well. There are kids everywhere. I suppose if I sat there for about 30 minutes, as the next Mass is starting I could wait. But that seems a little silly considering we don’t have the congestion problems your church has.


Ignore those that imply backing up is a mortal sin and indicative of poor driving. That is simply bizarre.


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