The USCCB blog has an interesting post, about a bishop encouraging people to use their mobile phones during Mass. Yes, you read that right.
During the 4 July closing of the Fortnight for Freedom at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, …
Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore, who concelebrated the Mass, called on the congregation to open their cellphones and text the word “freedom” or “libertad” to 377377. It was part of the U.S. bishops’ religious liberty text campaign, and in two minutes about 2,500 people suddenly joined the effort. Those who texted signed up to receive text messages about the campaign, which still continues. [Did you get that? We must not stop.] Archbishop Lori admitted that asking people to turn on their phones at Mass was a first for him – and likely a first for everyone in the congregation.
(People who want updates on religious liberty can still text “freedom” or libertad” to 377377.)
This was a “one off”, I think. We will, I am sure, agree that texting during Mass is sub-optimal.
People on call in emergency professions might need to respond to texts, calls, “pages”. They can go out. But the rest of us? Not so much.
Unusual circumstances aside, when Mass begins it is best to turn off the phones or at least switch off the ringer.