We have just bought a winter home ‘down south’ so will be joining a second parish family for part of the year. The church appears to have a vibrant bilingual community, a very respected K-12 school and, while they do not enjoy perpetual adoration, the tabernacle is beautifully present on the main alter. The people participating in daily mass seem very respectful of that sacred space. However, when we participated in the very well attended Saturday evening celebration of the mass, we were surprised and disappointed to see approximately 2/3 of the people bolt for the exits as soon as they had received the Eucharist. Others I have talked to from several parishes across the U.S. tell me they have had similar experiences in some parishes. This is new for me. How common is it for so many to jump and run after communion? This just seems so disrespectful to me. I was raised to understand that mass isn’t over until the last song is done. Or at least until the priest has processed out!
It happens a lot in Ireland. In many parts of Ireland it is also still common to see many of the men standing outside the church doors smoking during Mass, probably on the basis that if they pop in now and then at various times the their Sunday obligation is fulfilled. I’ve heard it said that so long as they lean up against the church wall when Mass is being said then that counts as being at Mass. Leaving after Communion is mild by comparison.
After this past winter, I can understand not wanting to be up in the UP during snow season if you can help it.
This phenomenon, unfortunately, is not unique. It is quite odd how different little cultural oddities pop up in different parishes. And when it becomes the “norm”, people often don’t think twice about it.
You are, of course, correct that Mass is not over until it’s actually over. To make the mental shift in the mind of the parish will take concerted effort on the part of the pastor. It can be done. But it’s not always easy. I don’t know that I’d hit the pastor with the suggestion on your first meeting, though. :o
Wonder what Father Marquette would say about this, eh?
We trolls are everywhere:D (that’s Michigan humor for you non-natives)
It bugs me too, but a lot of things people do during Mass bug me. I’m trying to stop worrying about it because it interferes with why I’m there in the first place.
God bless and hope the skeeters aren’t too bad this summer:D
In some Parishes this has become as bad a problem as the loud talking before & during Mass. Much to my alarm it is done more by the adults than the young people.
It makes you wonder if those that receive and run truly believe in the real presence of Christ in what they just consumed…
Sadly, this happens every Sunday in my Texas parish.
We can’t judge. Some of the people may have work issues, problems from others watching elders or sick children, etc. We can’t know which they are. I doubt that many of them have difficulties with transubstantiation.
One of our older priests refers to this phenomenon as The Early Christians…
It doesn’t seem to be that much of a problem in the parishes I’ve gone to. Sure, there are a few people that leave early, but not in great numbers.