This really irks me: at my parish we’ve been requested to “leave in silence” after Mass during Lent. Well, as soon at the priest leaves, the people take it as a signal to begin conversing with each other on their way out. The noise level in the church gets quite loud. Do you think I should complain to the pastor? Or am I being overly sensitive?
I’ve been in parishes which have done the “leave in silence” bit. It only works when the priest reminds people on a regular basis, and since there are always those people who don’t think that any rule applies to them, it doesn’t work 100%.
You have three choices, I think:
- Talk to the pastor, very carefully, about it. I have to say, it probably won’t work, though. On his scale of priorities, with everything else on his plate, it’s probably going to be fairly LOW.
- Talk to some of your friends about it, especially if they’re on the parish council, in the choir, etc. They could then approach Father; things usually go better if it’s not perceived of as just one “malcontent” but as a parish concern.
- Tell yourself, “Easter is almost here”, offer it up, stick in earplugs as soon as you hear, “The Mass is ended, go in peace”, and head to Eucharistic Adoration. The church will be cleared out shortly and you can then spend 15-30 minutes in silent, prayerful adoration as a gift to God.
Last night we decided to leave in silence for Palm Sunday only, and of course for Good Friday. It appears that, with proper instruction it will work.
It’s a bit much, and tends to become a gimmick, if done every Sunday. However, Palm Sunday starts with the joyous procession and becomes somber with the reading of the Passion. Silence at the end of mass emphasizes that progression.
For what it’s worth - technically, Sundays are not even part of Lent.
In addition, a recessional hymn isn’t even part of Mass.
Mass ends when the priest says it does " This Mass has ended, go in peace…"
Anything that happens after that is outside the Mass, outside the rubics and well within the priest’s authority to control.