Did I make the right decision?

Before I begin, I do admit. This post is somewhat for me to vent off to fellow Catholics about this situation. But I really want your opinions on whether or not I made a good opinion or not.

I am in high school, a freshman, and I am on the golf team. I altar serve the Sunday Mass, Daily Mass when I can, and Benediction.
About a week ago, I signed up to serve Holy Thursday and the Easter Vigil as the thurifer for those two masses.
However, I am on the golf team and one of our tournaments is Thursday after school which last until dark. And I have to be at the Church by 6 for training.
There are 5 people on our team and their needs to be at least 4 to play on the tournament. Well 2 others have already said they would not be able to do it, and I cannot because of this.
I knew about the tournament for about a month, but I never really took in the date because I assumed at the time that Easter would be in April, so I avoided early April tournaments, but this year, its the end of March… I wish I had known this.

I told my coach that I wouldn’t be able do to the tournament because I signed up for a very important Catholic holiday. To make a long story short, she got mad and told me that I made the boys team forfeit the match… however, 2 have already backed out and it takes 4 to match… so I am not the first one to say no, I can’t do it… but yes, I am apart of the cause.

I wish they had moved the date… It has got to me all day and I am very sad over it. I cannot miss Holy Thursday because I told Father I would be there and I am the only trained thurifer they have, and they need me.

At the end of mine and my coaches conversation, she did realize what I did was better than some who would just blow off the match, I told her in advance and she stated that “I did what I had to do.” … I repeated over and over that I was sorry.

What are your opinions?

You definitely made the right decision, and it was wrong of the coach to lay all the blame on you. Is there someone at the school you trust who you can talk to about this? I almost hate to say he needs to be confronted about this, because that rarely helps. But he does need to be told that what he did was wrong. If you can’t talk with someone at school, tell your parents. Or maybe tell them first, and then someone at school. Teen years are hard enough to get through without this sort of thing going on.

I kind of have to disagree that you made the right decision.

Don’t get me wrong here…All the Tiduum activities and serving Mass are important and desirable…and admirable, too :thumbsup:


You made a mistake in your calculations of the end of Lent / Easter. Your fault on that. You took on the golf team beforehand and made the commitment to that endevor. Now your team needs you. If you were one of the first two to back out, then I’d say fine, but again…because of your original mis-calculation you have waited too long. I do it all the time, so I’m just pointing it out! It’s the whole snooze / lose equation.

You can still fulfill your obligation as a catholic and honor your team commitment. And, learn an important lesson in the process.

I disagree with Cristy that you should talk to someone about this confrontation.
Obviously the coach reacted harshly - but may have just been having a bad day.
it had to be frustrating for him to have this happen so close to the tournament.

It was a sad turn of events and certainly you DO bear some responsibility for poor planning. Your desire to serve God in the Church is laudable, but you have responsibilities to the golf team too. Could you talk to your pastor or deacon to see if they could cover your spot for the mass?
This would not be hurtful to our Lord for by so doing (if possible) you are showing Love to your neighbor - in this case your teammates.

Just my thoughts


I am not trying to levy any blame off of me, because a lot of this was my fault for poor-planning…

But we have 5 people on our school team. Only 4 can be on a match. Under 4 and we forfeit. Well before I went and spoke to the Coach, 2 have already said they wouldn’t of been able to make it… so before I went, we had to already forfeit.

So its equally the 3 who quits fault, I guess…
I cant go because of Holy Thursday arrangements.
1 guy cant guy because he has a track meeting.
And the other one cant go because he wont be at school, and you can’t participate in an extracurricular activity unless your at school for most of the day.

And I did talk to 1 of the other boy golfers and he didn’t want to go either, and I can easily assume the other one didn’t want to go… but I fully understand. I let the TEAM down as a whole, and others as well… including the school and the coaches.

I think you did the right thing. In all likelihood, the coach’s reaction was just and no more that - a quick reaction to news that disappointed her. These things happen, no one is perfect.

Ideally, the tournament wouldn’t have been on Holy Thursday, but it was. Given that, ideally you would have known earlier and given the information earlier - but you didn’t and to be honest, getting the date wrong is an easy mistake to make and even if you had known earlier it likely wouldn’t have changed anything any way. Two others couldn’t go. It just wasn’t possible.

In a best case scenario, given the date of the tournament, had you mentioned your conflict earlier, one of the other guys who couldn’t attend would likely have weathered the same reaction you did.

Sorry you had to deal with a bad reaction, but it seems like you did the right thing.

This clarifies a lot…

At this point, just chalk it up to “lesson learned” and move forward.


I agree with most of your post…except I’m not quite understanding in what order the OP fell in the golfers backing out of the tournament. If he was the third to back out, then I’m not understanding why the coach got so upset because the team already would have had to forfeit the tournament since two dropped out, leaving only three that can play and they needed a total of four for the tournament. So my opinion on if the OP did the right thing is whether he was the second or third person to inform the coach he couldn’t play. If he was only the second, then he should have found someone else to serve for him at Mass on Thursday and he should have made arrangements to play in the tournament until it was officially forfeited.

Yeeeeahhhh…wait a minute here…

5 man team
2 backed out already
Instant forfeit

So, why did OP even have to back out of a non-existent tournament?

I’m thoroughly confused here… :blush:

I believe the coach just wanted to scold me, for some reason maybe? Telling me how I maybe of left the team? I don’t know…I maybe confused too as well. The coach told us we need at least 4 people on a team to play in a match, and with only 3, well… I don’t know.

I’m thinking that since guy #2 was available but disqualified due to missing his regular classes that day, coach had been going out on a limb calling in favors to either get #2’s disqualification waived or get him to attend enough hours in school to be able to play. If coach believed the tourney to be a lost cause, he would (should) have already broken the news of forfeiture to the other 3 players.

Then along comes JD and sinks the whole plan. JD was wrong for not paying attention to the calendar, but coach was wrong for not communicating his actions to the team.

I’ll bet JD never again forgets how many Sundays are in Lent.

I think the coach was probably just overreacting a bit to not being informed sooner. She probably has to deal with that a lot, and she just took it out on you in the moment. I’m not excusing what she said to you, not saying she was right, just suggesting that her actions were understandable, if you know what I mean. We all have our weak moments. Like Iron Donkey said, “In all likelihood, the coach’s reaction was just and no more that - a quick reaction to news that disappointed her. These things happen, no one is perfect.” Try to give her the benefit of the doubt, take the negative stuff she said with a grain of salt, and cut her some slack. :slight_smile:

I think you were right to tell her as soon as you realized there was a schedule conflict rather than just waiting until the last minute or blowing it off, and I think you were right to be apologetic. Next time you’ll probably strive harder to be on top of it even earlier. :wink:

You’ve been Catholic less than a year, and you’re an altar server?..sweet. :cool:

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