Is it okay to not pay attention and count your money and pay bills in church?

I asked my Aunt about something the priest said in church and she wasn’t paying attention, she was counting her money and writing checks and money orders, am I wrong that I got upset with her about this? Was I being an immature child like my Aunt said?

I think you already know the answer to this one.

Of course it’s wrong to not pay attention in mass, and I’m confused about why she would be taking care of this sort of thing in mass unless it was writing a check to put in the collection basket.

Why does she even bother to go? She should just stay home and do that at the kitchen table like everyone else. I suspect your Aunt thinks that she is getting “points” for showing up and physically being in church. Doesn’t work that way.

I don’t know why she goes to church.

Most of it was money for bills,not money for a donation to the church.

Do not even pray the Rosary during Mass. Pray the Rosary before or after Mass. The Mass requires ALL of your attention, devotion, love and prayers. It is an unfathonable source of grace, for those who approach it as such. For those who treat it otherwise gain from it, what the invest
No, you were not wrong to be upset, as your aunt does not understand the faith upon which she is resting her eternal soul. I would suggest she attend an RCIA class as a refresher.

… and I think your aunt let you know what was right / wrong when she called you ‘immature child’

Sounds like deflection based on guilt. :stuck_out_tongue:

If I were you, I wouldn’t mention it to her. Not right away.

(I was about to suggest you do something that would get BOTH of us in trouble… don’t do that) :o

Ok… let’s get that out of MY head… and when you get her alone, let her know that you were bothered by what you saw in church… that you expected that you (both you and she) were in church to pay attention, and since it’s just a short amount of time, that time could and should be for the Lord and your attention to the Mass.

Not to chastise her, of course, but ask her to help you to not do what she has done. Offer a chance for the two of you to work on techniques to improve your attentiveness at Mass. :slight_smile:

Well, imagine how it would feel if you had a friend over for a dinner party to celebrate the fact that you gave your kidney to them and all they did was sit there, eat your food, and pay their bills and ignore you the whole time. This is basically what is going on when people fiddle around in mass (a sin I myself am guilty of from time to time :()

But also remember that when we call someone out on something we need to be as gentle as doves. I didn’t hear the conversation, but did you kindly say something out of concern, or did you use it as a chance to put her down and make yourself seem somehow better? Our attitude when correcting another usually holds more sway on their reaction than the correction itself.

Try to sit next to someone who listens, or else ask the priest after Mass. You do not need an excuse to distance yourself from someone who feels free to call you names. Tell your aunt about what was said later, if you found it inspiring. You never know, if it has a good effect on you, she may decide to listen more closely in the future.

If she were to brag about how much she gets done during Mass, that would be an invitation to comment. Otherwise, you’ll have more peace if you don’t correct those who haven’t asked for your opinion and are not under your jurisdiction to correct. After all, you’ll never get to the bottom of the world’s upsetting people, particularly in places that try to pack themselves with sinners.

As a non-believer who attends weekly mass with my Catholic wife, I have to admit that my attention often wanders. However, to sit there and actually do something else during mass strikes me as being rather rude. As others have asked, why bother going at all?

If she’s going to answer her nephew’s objection to such an obvious breach of ettiquette by calling him an immature child, what is the point of asking her?

He’s come here and found that he’s not wrong in judging her behavior incorrect, that his question was not immature nor childish, but there’s nothing to be gained by the OP telling his aunt that. Either she got his point (even though she reacted badly to it) or she didn’t. Being more blunt with her, though, is hardly likely to have good results. The messenger is more likely to be shot than not.

Whatever happens, if she comes around to his point of view, the last thing he should EVER do is say “I told you so.” (Ooo, boy, would that be a bad idea!)

I once had an issue with inappropriate attention a man was paying me -

The priest I talked to about it said Satan was getting two passes at me

a) The first pass was if I had gone along with it and fallen into lust
b) The second pass is if I became judgemental and condemned that man for his actions.

The tough part William is you must learn to do two things at once:

a) Pay attention in mass to the Liturgy of the Word even when other are not
b) Not judge those that are not too harshly

Usually we will fall short one way or the other because Satan is a powerful angel and we are human. This is why we need to ask the Lord for help with our shortcomings and partake in the Sacrament of Confession when we fall short. The point is none of us beats Satan’s traps without the power and Grace of the Lord, Jesus Christ.


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