Reading of Parish Bulletin


#1

I have, what I feel… is a legitimate question/concern. I’m not sure if this is “common practice” in most parishes, but it certainly has been… in the two parishes where we attend Mass. I’d like to understand, why this is done.

At the end of each weekend Mass… before the final blessing and “Go in Peace” are given, we are forced to sit and listen to a lengthy reading of the Sunday Bulletin. Why is that?

Last weekend, a very elderly Deacon took the better part of 15 mins to go through the bulletin; Ok, it may have been closer to 10 mins. But the point is, by the end of it… there were at least 3-4 small children… screaming at the top of their lungs. And my disabled, elderly mother… was very anxious to leave .

Now, the difficulty is this. We are told that we must not leave… before the final blessing is given… and if we do… our attendance at Mass isn’t valid <we have heard this, time and time again in both parishes>. It seems to me, that this “rule” <? for lack of a better term> is being misused… to force a recognition of Sunday bulletin content. There are many, many people… who simply refuse to stay, and they take their entire families… and leave, before the final blessing. And the other half of the congregation… do stay .

I know I will be told, that because of my mother… it’s “ok to leave”… but that warning of Mass being invalid, rings in my ears. Because our priest hasn’t told us, we can leave. Where is it stated in the Catechism… that the “reading of the bulletin” is a part of the Mass???

I’m wondering, then… how aware are Pastors, that there are 3 “groups” in their midst, who suffer <sometimes, intensely> through this “forced” reading of the Sunday Bulletin? I’m speaking of… ChildrenElderly… and the Disabled.

I simply can’t understand… why Father doesn’t stand up and say… “For those of you who can stay for the Bulletin announcements, please do” <out of obedience, many people will stay>… and then, give the final blessing before it is read… allowing those who can not stay, the option of leaving. Are they afraid everyone will get up and leave at once? <hmm… scratches head> If so… then maybe they should just trust… that when Bulletins are taken, they will be read at home. We always read them, at home.

Ok… well, thanks for letting me get that out of my system. It was difficult for me… to watch my mother squirming around and to hear all of those tired children screaming… because they had sat too long… in a confined area.

I hope that if any Pastors read this… they might consider making alterations to the reading of the Bulletin, after Mass… for the 3 groups I mentioned. Thanks and God bless.:frowning:


#2

The GIRM says that

"90. **The concluding rites consist of
**
[LIST=1]
*]**Brief announcements, if they are necessary; **
*]The priest’s greeting and blessing,
*]The dismissal of the people by the deacon or the priest, so that each may go out to do good works, praising and blessing God;
*]The kissing of the altar by the priest and the deacon, followed by a profound bow to the altar by the priest, the deacon, and the other ministers
[/LIST]

I know that in parishes where it’s obvious that printing a bulletin is a waste of trees and money (because people don’t read it and then complain that they didn’t know things were happening) it’s tempting to turn ‘brief announcements’ into ‘review the bulletin’ time but that’s not right. A simple ‘there are important announcements in the bulletin, please pick one up on your way out’ is much better. Of course there are often one or two things that are important to emphasize orally, but not the entire bulletin.


#3

[quote="Phemie, post:2, topic:234942"]
The GIRM says that I know that in parishes where it's obvious that printing a bulletin is a waste of trees and money (because people don't read it and then complain that they didn't know things were happening) it's tempting to turn 'brief announcements' into 'review the bulletin' time but that's not right. A simple 'there are important announcements in the bulletin, please pick one up on your way out' is much better. Of course there are often one or two things that are important to emphasize orally, but not the entire bulletin.

[/quote]

Thank you, Phemie. I agree with your observations. A reasonable reading of very important announcements, seems fine. As long as it doesn't stretch into things like attendance at the Parish Fish Fry.. etc. Those things are time consuming, and unnecessary. Thanks for your words. God bless.


#4

[quote="Phemie, post:2, topic:234942"]
The GIRM says that I know that in parishes where it's obvious that printing a bulletin is a waste of trees and money (because people don't read it and then complain that they didn't know things were happening) it's tempting to turn 'brief announcements' into 'review the bulletin' time but that's not right. A simple 'there are important announcements in the bulletin, please pick one up on your way out' is much better. Of course there are often one or two things that are important to emphasize orally, but not the entire bulletin.

[/quote]

None of the parishes I am familiar with do any kind of lengthy announcements or reading of the bulletin. Seems redundant and out of place at that time (or any time). Many of the parishes do short announcements immediately before Mass, suggesting people pick up a bulletin afterward, as you mention. Most of the parishes have ushers or other volunteeers offering bulletins to people as they leave. Sometimes the celebrant will mention a "reminder" or two before the final blessing and closing hymn. But I never heard of reading from the bulletin, which seems problematic for the reasons mentioned, in addition to much of the material (school news, societies, committees meetings, etc.) not applying to the majority of the congregation. I would suggest that you politely bring this to the attention of the Pastor or even the chair of the Liturgy committee (if you have one), pointing out the problems with this (inculding few people paying attention) and ask them to find a better way to "get the word out".


#5

You might feel forced, but you are not being forced.

For many long years, people who struggled to attend Mass before
going to work, would leave the church right after receiving Holy Communion.
The practice was not unusual or considered disrepectful.

As far as the GIRM regulations, it’s my understanding that
those exist for the instruction of the celebrants. To the best
of my knowledge, there is NO such rule that mandates one
to remain in the church through the final blessing.


#6

"our attendance at Mass isn't valid "

:eek: Yes, you have attended the mass. Go in peace, to love and serve the Lord.
Pick up a bulletin on your way out too. Hugs to you as you care for your mom.


#7

You CAN leave before the final blessing, and it is still a valid Mass attendance. BUT, you should not leave, it is both rude and disrespectful.

Instead, speak to the Pastor about this. They are supposed to make brief announcements, not stand there and read the entire bulletin. That's why they PRINT the bulletin.


#8

One of my biggest pet peeves is when people read to me thing I can read on my own (going though the home buying process right now is torture for me because of this--lol). Anyway, I think it's usual to read the whole bulletin. Sometimes my Church will have special speakers, but that only lasts 2-3 minutes (not 10 or 15). I would bring it to the attention of your priest.


#9

[quote="MarieVeronica, post:1, topic:234942"]
I'm wondering, then.. how aware are Pastors, that there are 3 "groups" in their midst, who suffer through this "forced" reading of the Sunday Bulletin? I'm speaking of.. Children.. Elderly.. and the Disabled.(

[/quote]

In college I attended a parish that did this as well, but I seem to remember that there was something else going on - perhaps cleaning the vessels. I felt it was odd but could see where it could help the elderly and disabled who couldn't read very well. Does this reading extend the Mass beyond the "golden hour"? What if the celebrant had added another 10 min to his homily instead?

Anyone that is suffering intensely is not only excused from staying for the blessing but also from attending all together.


#10

Really, I’ve never heard of that.

My parish is very large.
Our bulletin is very large.
All announcements that are made refer to
events scheduled on that same Sunday or
to changes that conflict with the usual schedules.

Ideally, we get to church long before Mass begins.
We remain at Mass until the priest has processed OUT of church.
Knowing that and abiding by that, I have no problem
if/when I must make an exception (very rarely).


#11

Well, this is what my parish does as well. I was probably not very clear (I noticed some typos in my post). The OP said that they read the entire bulletin to the Church (it sounded like word for word) every Sunday, before Mass is ended and it takes 10-15 minutes for them to read it. That is what I think is unusual (I didn’t qualify what I meant originally–sorry for being unclear). I would think most people would read it on their own after Church.

Anyway, I’ve lived in many places and have been a member of 10 parishes in my life and none of them have read the entire bulletin to at the end announcements. Sure they all have some announcements or go over things like you said (changes or conflicts) but they certainly don’t read the whole thing. I never said anything about leaving Mass early–not sure if you were saying I advocated that or not, but I just wanted to be clear in case I was misleading. I just said the OP should probably bring the concern to the attention of the parish priest.


#12

Oh my goodness! I know exactly what you mean! I'm like, "Lord, I love the Mass but REALLY can ya make him shut up!" I just offer it up for the souls in purgatory now. They have to wait awhile to be at home with Christ so I guess I can wait another 10 minutes to be in my earthly home....If I must;) lol!


#13

I find it insulting when someone hands me something to read and then proceeds to read it TO me. I’d much rather read it by myself, thank you very much! :stuck_out_tongue:

At any given Sunday, these are our typical Announcements:

We have an upcoming social event, please stop by the table in the narthex. for more details. The latest edition of The Word Amoung Us is available… your donation of blah blah blah… Thank you for your generous donations for Food Pantry Sunday. If you’d like to give a cash donation for perishable items like milk and eggs, please drop it into the box located by the door. Let us pray…

Short & Sweet. Just how I like it.

Give your dear Mom a kiss from me. Tell her I said she raised a good daughter, and may God bless you both.


#14

Thank you all, for your responses. I can see that we're not alone.. with this. Actually, I did not say the "entire Bulletin" was being read. I said they do a "lengthy" reading of the Bulletin. They read the "very important" announcements, as we should all expect. But then.. they also wade into the "not-so-important".. such as attendance at the Lenten Fish Frys.. meetings of the parish Girl Scouts, etc., etc.

And no, I wasn't over stating it. We have been kept after Mass, for as long as 10-15 mins., as they often keep "Guest Speakers" for the end.. . Both of these, together.. can take up to 15 mins longer. Not kidding, folks!

As far as people leaving.. it IS taught in both parishes that we attend.. mentioned frequently, that if we leave before the final blessing and "Go in Peace" is given.. we haven't really "attended Mass". This thinking apparently, has spread around to several parishes. I believe, I've even heard this stated on EWTN .

That's why I was so concerned. Because if it is true.. then, someone.. somewhere.. is forgetting about the weakest and most easily tired members of the congregation: Children, Elderly and Disabled. Somehow, I can't imagine that making Our Lord very happy. :(

I will think about the advice, to talk to the Pastor(s), It's good advice. Most of the time, these issues arise simply because those making the decisions are unaware of the special difficulties of having a child, elderly or disabled in your care. Thanks again and God bless.


#15

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