QUAERITUR: No group Rosary in church because it is “private prayer”

From a reader:

A group of us wanted to recite the Rosary after Mass in church and our pastor said ‘No the Rosary is a ‘private prayer’ and cannot be said as a group in church…..your thoughts ???

Are you sure that is what he said?

If he really said that – and it is a little hard to believe – I think that to be one of the dumbest things I have heard in a long time.

Of course the Rosary can be prayed by groups and in a church!

I would jot the pastor a kind, brief note asking him to explain why the Rosary cannot be prayed by a group in church. I hope he responds in writing.

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  1. jbas says:

    That’s the sort of nonsense we were taught in the seminary in the late ’80’s.

  2. frjim4321 says:

    We permit it after daily mass. I would tend to agree that a group rosary should not be permitted before mass because it would be a distraction to those who wish to prepare for mass in some other way – or worse the group rosary before mass could be coersive in that anyone who does not join is made to feel outcast if they do not share a liking for that particular optional devotion.

  3. merrydelval says:

    I have to say… the Rosary was started in my parish as a means of keeping people quiet before Mass. It is done by a Knight of Columbus from the pulpit. My problem with it, is not that it is the Rosary, but that the Rosary becomes a kind of background as people come in, and most people come in at some time during the Rosary, they don’t just join in, and they sit there reading the bulletin waiting for Mass to start after the Rosary is over. It is a private devotion, and even though I am all in favour of it being done publicly, then it should be done, well, publicly, so everyone gathers to pray it. There is no silence before Mass, and no one can prepare for Mass. Is it too much to ask that there be some quiet in church? Fr Smith

  4. wmeyer says:

    At my uncle’s parish, the Knights lead a Rosary before the 4:30 Saturday Mass. I have been there several times for it. Many attend, and many others are present, waiting their turn for a confessional, or simply in private prayer. No one seems to be disturbed in the least by any of these things. I can’t imagine why anyone would wish to prohibit or otherwise limit the practice.

  5. teomatteo says:

    Yikes! the two EF masses in my area have the recitation of the blessed rosary before every mass. I learned how to say the rosary as an adult (an old one at that) there before the latin mass. In both cases the rosary is started about fourty minutes before mass begins so that there is about 10 min. of silence. Man, i hope its not wrong to do.

  6. dans0622 says:

    Wouldn’t it be nice if my distractions in preparing for Mass were caused by the Rosary.

  7. jasoncpetty says:

    If that’s what the priest said, obviously his principle’s wrong–you get an indulgence for reciting it in groups. He might be right in practice, though–is your “after Mass” someone else’s “before Mass”? I don’t mind a Rosary going on before Mass, and actually like it, but it ought to be wrapped up at least 5 minutes before to give others silent time in which to recollect themselves in their chosen manner.

  8. jbas says:

    It seems to me the Father can only be pleased to look down from Heaven and see a group meditating upon the mysteries of salvation in one of his Son’s churches. If the angels sang the Kadosh/Sanctus (which was not then part of the Levitical liturgy of Israel) as a group before the presence of God without reprimand from Isaiah, then surely priests can leave a group of the faithful imitating them alone.

  9. I would tend to agree that a group rosary should not be permitted before mass because it would be a distraction to those who wish to prepare for mass in some other way – or worse the group rosary before mass could be coersive in that anyone who does not join is made to feel outcast if they do not share a liking for that particular optional devotion.

    The questioner was actually wanting the Rosary after Mass. But what is now going on both before and after Mass is incessant yakking, about which priests seem to be doing next to nothing. Why is that preferable to the Rosary?

    Also, I don’t buy into the mentality that holds that a devotion is “coercive” merely by existing at a certain time in a church. Like those who hate the sound of church bells, I bet you’ll find that persons who feel “coerced” by a group Rosary come in with pre-existing problems whose causes lie elsewhere. I submit that a person who “feels like an outcast” because he doesn’t want to pray the Rosary — as opposed to being able to just sit quietly while others around him pray it — may actually have a deeper problem, such as a bad conscience about something, that maybe the pastor ought to help him deal with, instead of using coercion on others in order to cater to unreasonable sensibilities.

  10. AJS says:

    Public recitation of the rosary before Mass is less than ideal. It would be more fitting for the parish to sing one of the Hours of the Divine Office before Mass begins. There is a danger in turning private devotions (all wonderful and laudable in its proper context) into paraliturgical events that supplant Lauds or Vespers in the liturgical life of a parish. The Hours and the Mass are the public prayers of the Church, unless we think +Trautman is correct and liturgy really is “too hard” for the people to understand/appreciate.

  11. frjim4321 says:

    This all makes me wonder about the original email that generated this post. Did the priest say “you can never say the rosary as a group in church” or was he saying “we don’t do group rosary before mass here.” Two different things. I would never permit group rosary before mass. First it demeans the rosary itself becsuse its being used for something other than prayer (to keep people under control – sick thinking). Second it is not being done respectfully – people are coming and going and doing their own thing. Third it imposes a devotion that is optional upon everyone. Fourth it preclude more traditional and dignified gathering options such as well-prepared preludes and/or choral pieces.

    Fortunately we don’t have it at our place and we never did so it is not an issue for me. That would also make it easy for me to ensure that it would never start.

  12. Dominic Maria says:

    Indeed i would rather the Rosary was being said befor eor after Mass than much of what happens. I have noticed that in many churches (in my experience really only OF)as soon as the Priest has left the people all stand and mill around chatting loudly, which makes it hard to pray and make acts of thanksgiving. A Rosary would be much preferable to that, I really hate the whole Mass is over lets be social thing, if they want to chat step outside so I can pray in peace. If the Rosary was being said though it would encourege quiet and espeacilly if it was just done in a low voice enar the front of the church it would create a prayerful murmur which would be conductive to prayer. It would be a good way to stop the same chat before Mass.

    As for it being only for private use, someone better tell the great saints of the rosary that, Pope JP II who encoureged it so firmly as well as the popes who left the indulgences for saying it in family groups and other communites etc especilly in church intact. A devotion can still be private even if said by a hundred people.

  13. dominicansoul says:

    In today’s Catholic Church, you hear gossip done in groups before Mass begins, you hear the dull roar of jokes and conversations in groups before the Mass….so, I’m not sure what this priest’s complaint is? He should instead, complain about all the worthless group chatter done, rather than a group Rosary!

    St. Dominic once asked the beast which saint he feared the most? Satan did not want Dominic to know, but the Saint pressed on, and the beast unwillingly answered, “The Mother of Christ! I have no success with her faithful servants!” Because of this, St. Dominic made the Holy Rosary one of his priorities.

    IN this godless age where the Church is under tremendous attack by Satan and his minions, you would think it would become an obligation to pray the Holy Rosary before Mass and the Prayer to St. Michael immediately after Mass!

  14. Papabile says:

    Oh… this reminds me of the time an old Pastor of mine tried that on the group of ladies who used to say it after the principal Sunday Mass (of which there were no masses following).

    They thanked him for his concern, and they started belting out the Salve Regina, followed by the Alma Redemptoris Mater, etc. etc. after the next Sunday’s Mass. You should have seen the look on the Pastor’s face!

    He tried to stop them, but they had asked the Bishop if they could pray for him by using these prayers after Mass, and he had sent them an effusive thank you letter.

    It was too funny.

  15. timelord says:

    When I was newly ordained (1988) my first pastor forbade me to pray the Rosary before the exposed Blessed Sacrament. I showed him the papal document from Pope Paul VI (Marialis Cultus) which said that only Christocentric devotions were appropriate for Sacred Liturgy, the Rosary (as opposed to a Litany of Our Lady) is itself CHRISTOCENTRIC. Finally, the Vatican issued a response to a dubium which settled the matter once and for all. The Rosary CAN be prayed publicly before the Blessed Sacrament, whether in the Tabernacle or in the Monstrance.

    Jan. 15, 1997, Congregation for Divine Worship (Prot no. 2287/96/L)

    Praying the Rosary DURING Mass is discouraged but not BEFORE or AFTER the Sacred Liturgy. An exception would be if the Mass is in a language the person does not understand or if they are hearing impaired. It would be better to pray the Rosary BEFORE Mass to help prepare for the Holy Sacrifice whereas afterwards, people may want (need) to make a private and quiet prayer of thanksgiving.

  16. Midwest St. Michael says:

    Fr. Jim says:

    “I would never permit group rosary before mass. First it demeans the rosary itself becsuse its being used for something other than prayer (to keep people under control – sick thinking).”

    So, keeping people under control by *not* allowing the “rosary before mass” is not “sick thinking”? :)

    Just askin’.


  17. I don’t mind the Rosary before or after Mass. I do mind noise when I’m trying to prepare myself for Mass. I tend to think the Rosary should be finished at least 10 min before Mass to give proper time for recollection and prayer.

  18. marknelza says:

    Following on from some earlier comments amount praying the Rosary before Mass. I feel that praying the Rosary as a group before Mass is distracting and inconsiderate. Almost as much as when the choir decides to have rehearsals before Mass on a Sunday, because they couldn’t be bothered rehearsing during the week or on Saturday’s. I go to Mass early precisely to have silence. I don’t mind and often do join in praying the Rosary with the group after Mass. Our parish begins this prayer after each weekday Mass, about 10 minutes after Mass ends.

  19. marknelza says:

    Apologies… my earlier post should read “about praying the Rosary” not “amount praying the Rosary”. The curse of auto correct functionality.

  20. Legisperitus says:

    No problem with the Extraordinary Form. There’s plenty of opportunity for silent recollection during Mass.

  21. frjim4321 says:

    Papabille your comment makes me thankful that we have a great organist who can belt out awesome postludes after mass.

  22. Apart from inanities–such as that the Rosary is private not public prayer, or is not a good “gathering option” (may God not strike me for even typing such a barbaric phrase!)–and as one with a ten decades daily personal devotion, I must confess to wondering whether a recited Rosary might be for some a distraction from quiet and individual prayerful preparation in the moments before Holy Mass.

  23. Supertradmum says:

    Show the priest the standards for some of the indulgences written under Blessed John Paul II. One of the criteria one may choose for making a plenary indulgence is the public recitation of the rosary, along with the other usual things done.

  24. frjim4321 says: I would never permit group rosary before mass. First it demeans the rosary itself becsuse its being used for something other than prayer (to keep people under control – sick thinking).

    (a) How do you know that? Is that not a rush to judgment? (b) Couldn’t the same argument be made about mandatory attendance at Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation, or indeed any other precept of the Church? (c) Why would you deny the faithful an opportunity to gain an indulgence by publicly reciting the Rosary? (d) What’s wrong with salutary side effects of popular devotions?

    Second it is not being done respectfully – people are coming and going and doing their own thing.

    (a) Again, we could say the same thing about Mass, during which people — including, God help us, the priest celebrant — are frequently doing their own thing. (b) The only way to protect the Rosary from being done disrespectfully is to prevent its being said at all, which, I fear, is just the direction certain people in the Church would like to see us go.

    Third it imposes a devotion that is optional upon everyone.

    The mere public recitation of the Rosary is not an imposition on anyone since, as you properly note, it is OPTIONAL. Coercion is ruled out of an optional devotion by definition. This “coercion” line of thinking comes from precisely the mentality that has given rise to the pushing of Christianity out of the public square: we have to “protect” people from being “imposed upon” by being exposed to Christian beliefs. A Catholic who despises the Rosary is indeed an object of pity, but not for the reasons you seem to think.

    Fourth it preclude more traditional and dignified gathering options such as well-prepared preludes and/or choral pieces.

    Would to God SOMETHING would preclude the choir rehearsing “Gather Us In” or “On Eagle’s Wings.”

    Sorry, Father, no sale. If you have a Catholic come complaining to you because he despises the public recitation of the Rosary, I would urge you to view that as a cry for help from an endangered soul, and help him to try to get to the bottom of whatever his problems are, rather than assist him in sedating his conscience.

  25. capchoirgirl says:

    I think you’re not allowing proper attention to the fact that some people may prefer another way to prepare for Mass. Some people may want to do some lectio, or silent prayer before the tabernacle, or other forms of prayer. And while I love the Rosary I find that, when I am in a parish that allows it before Mass, it is highly distracting to my own preparation. Usually I say the rosary myself, to myself, and the group that’s praying it may be meditating on a different mystery, be ahead or behind where I am, etc. And it IS distracting, and it IS coercive, in a way, because that’s the prayer that’s going on around you. I would much prefer an instrumental piece, actually, because, without any words, it is much easier for me–and I would wager, others, based on some comments here–to pray as I wish before Mass.
    I, however, see no problem with it after Mass, as that is how it is done at my parish. It is done about 5 minutes after Mass concludes, so people can say their prayers of thanksgiving after Mass in silence. I have no problem with it then. But I think you are jumping to conclusions in assuming that people who do not like it said before Mass, because they find it distracting, are “endangered souls” or “have problems.” That is a rush to judgment on your part.

  26. HeatherPA says:

    Our priest has Holy Hour of Exposition before every daily Mass and he always leads the rosary at the beginning of the hour. I am so grateful for him… there is plenty of time for private devotions before Benediction.

  27. Josephus Muris Saliensis says:

    Well, none of you has mentioned the INDULGENCE, which is only Plenary when recited in public, otherwise, for private recitation, it is Partial.

    This seems a GOOD REASON for public recitation.

    The idea that the prayer so very pleasing to Our Lord and His Blessed Mother could be somehow be a “distraction” leave me somewhat perplexed.

    What could be a better way to prepare for Mass, or to make thanksgiving afterwards?

  28. Cath says:

    A former priest I had would not allow us to pray a rosary as a group during a Holy Hour. He said a rosary was not conducive to the spirit of silence and should not be said. Rather, we got to listen to him make long drawn out breaths that made it appear as if he was bored.

  29. capchoirgirl says: But I think you are jumping to conclusions in assuming that people who do not like it said before Mass, because they find it distracting, are “endangered souls” or “have problems.” That is a rush to judgment on your part.

    I was not addressing people who merely don’t like it said before Mass because it’s distracting, but people who feel “coerced,” “made to feel outcast,” and “imposed upon” because the Rosary is being recited publicly. I was addressing the specific remarks of another commenter.

    Josephus Muris Saliensis says: Well, none of you has mentioned the INDULGENCE, which is only Plenary when recited in public, otherwise, for private recitation, it is Partial.

    Two of us have mentioned this.

  30. Tim Ferguson says:

    I, too, get a kick out of the notion of a pastor worried about “controlling” a group through the use of a traditional devotion, and in the same paragraph stating apodictically, “I would never permit group rosary before Mass.”

    With all due deference to Father, the faithful have a right “to worship God according to the prescripts of their own rite approved by the legitimate pastors of the Church and to follow their own form of spiritual life so long as it is consonant with the doctrine of the Church.” (canon 214 of the Western Code) Every Pope in the past 200 years has praised the rosary as a laudable devotion for the faithful to pray both publicly and privately. If the faithful of a parish want to pray the rosary prior to Holy Mass, I think it would show an excess of “controlling mentality” for their pastor for forbid them from doing so.

  31. Julia says:

    regarding choirs practicing before Mass:

    At my parish, we practiced every Wednesday evening, but by Sunday Father would have requested something we had not practiced or the sister/liturgist gave us sheet music for something we had never heard of right before Mass.

    The choir practice room was taken over for 24/7 Perpetual Adoration so we had not choice but to do last minute run-through or learn something new right there in the choir loft.

    There would often be a battle with the folks who wanted to do their rosary before Mass. We had to learn/practice the pieces that father and the liturgist said (at the last minute) we had to do.

  32. acardnal says:

    @marknelza: why is it okay to pray the rosary after Mass but not before?

  33. CatholicByChoice says:

    I have been in a parish that recited the rosary before Mass and I did not care for it. I am one of those that longs for more silence before, during and after the Mass. Granted, those of you praying aloud do not intend to interfere with others, but there should be some consideration as you do in fact have a captive audience in the church. Please give some thought to the many who may be trying their hardest to tune you out so they can prayfully prepare themselves in their own way. Could you not pray the Rosary publically as a group in a separate room, and then join the rest of the Faithful in the church when you are done? Or – could you not pray your rosary in a group but SILENTLY to yourselves. Please give some considerations to others…yes you feel an entitlement to recite your Rosary before Mass, but would you admit that others might feel entitled not to have to struggle to tune you out so we can prepare in our own ways? I think sanctuaries should be as quiet as possible. Jesus said not to do your prayers in front of everyone, but to “go into the closet” and do your prayers because “you have your just reward.”

  34. acardnal says:

    In most of the Novus Ordo/OF Masses I have attended in my life, I have rarely observed people engaged in lectio divina or silent prayer before Mass but instead the majority are unfortunately engaged in conversation and reading the bulletin and checking their cell phones! Recitation of rosary can quiet them down and sometimes draw them into the meditation. And then there’s the Plenary Indulgence/Partial Indulgence as some have already mentioned.

    FYI, every TLM/EF Mass I attend is quiet, quiet, quiet both before and after Mass – except, of course, for the babies whom Our Lady loves.

  35. heway says:

    Rather a funny way of ‘controlling’ people if it is their idea. We always say the Rosary following our am Mass. If you get there early enough you can participate in the morning Liturgical Prayer before Mass.
    The ‘secretary’ stood up after the vigil Mass one Sat and said…Father can we say the Rosary before Mass. Then it would be quiet.
    Well, we have started and my husband starts at 3:30 and we are done by 3:45 -Mass is at 4:00pm. Quess who does not get there in time to participate? The person who asked to do this.

  36. Sword40 says:

    I attend four different TLM parishes and all of them pray the Rosary prior to Mass with the priests encouragement. Two of the parishes are FSSP and two are Diocesan.

  37. Catholicity says:

    You know, praying the Rosary as a group is just a bunch of individuals praying the Rosary privately. So, what is the big deal? “We are praying it individually, Father. We just happen to be doing it sort of superimposed-like.”

  38. Mary Jane says:

    Interesting to read the variety of strong opinions on this subject.

    The FSSP parish I attend has a Rosary accompanied with nearly every Mass — for daily Mass the Rosary is recited about 15 – 30 minutes after Mass ends, and for Sunday the Rosary is recited in-between Masses.

    I don’t think I have a strong opinion either way…except that there is something to be said for the indulgences and graces gained by reciting the Rosary in public. I do think Church is a place for silence, unless that silence is being broken by public prayer or music. So…no gabbing, talking, visiting, what-have-you. Uh uh.

  39. acardnal says:

    @Sword40: to clarify, some of the TLM/EF parishes I attend do have rosary before Mass. And some NO/OF parishes do too. I participate readily. The rosary is the highest prayer after the Mass, and it is a great way to meditate on the mysteries and prepare for Mass as the Popes have said many times.

  40. Marie Teresa says:

    When members of the parish council asked about praying a decade of the Rosary before Mass, Father said no because one couple would be offended. They happen to be the same couple who oppose kneeling at any time and who remain standing when everyone else kneels. They also refuse to adopt the new translation and LOUDLY recite the old prayers.

    Support for praying the Rosary was one family less than 100%.

    To be honest, she can be horrible. No one would want to argue with her, which seems the wrong reason to not pray the Rosary.

  41. acardnal says:

    @Marie Teresa: I wonder if that couple happens to be a big donor, too!

  42. AnnAsher says:

    Amen FrJim4321 !
    Where we go for TLM the community has rosary before Mass. It’s a good thing and they are good people. But. I want to pray other prayers of preparation for Mass. I also don’t always think the theology that is interjected between decades is sound. So I pass and always feel a few eyes on my back.

  43. AnnAsher says:

    Josephus Muris, I like The Prayer Before Mass of Thomas Aquinas. An act of offering and act of contrition (if I’ve not gone to sacramental confession – then it is an act of thanksgiving after Confession).

  44. wmeyer says:

    Were I to be faced with a pastor who would not allow a public devotion in the church, I wold shake the dust from my sandals and find a better parish.

    In my own parish, preparation before Mass is almost impossible for the inane chatter from the choir, who seem to think they are in the parish hall. Of course, as the tabernacle is not there, that is a contributing factor.

  45. Girgadis says:

    I prefer not to participate in group recitation of the Rosary before Mass but I don’t object to those who do, nor is the Rosary a “distraction” from my own private prayer. I wish there were more “distractions” like it before the Novus Ordo Mass in my parish.

    I am more inclined to participate in group recitation when it’s held after Mass or at some other scheduled time.

    Marie Teresa, good thing I don’t belong to your parish because I’d probably be going out of my way to “offend” the couple you describe. I have come across a person here and there who outright refuses to pray the new translation. When forced to attend the same Mass, I am always careful to sit behind such folks, not in front of them, as they are less likely to throw me off (and tick me off) if they’re not in my ear.

  46. albinus1 says:

    At my parish, we practiced every Wednesday evening, but by Sunday Father would have requested something we had not practiced or the sister/liturgist gave us sheet music for something we had never heard of right before Mass.

    Julia, is your choir paid by the parish? I wonder why you feel that you have to accede to these requests. Every parish choir I’ve sung with consists of volunteers. Since we are volunteering our time, we have generally felt free to say “no” to last-minute demands (and yes, they have sometimes been demands, not requests) that we sing something that we do not know and have not rehearsed. What are they going to do, fire us? I think it’s not too much to set a policy that any unfamiliar music needs to be requested at least one week in advance, to give the choir time to rehearse. As for the “sister/liturgist”, I thought the whole point of having a “liturgist” in the first place was to plan things so as to avoid this sort of last-minute scrambling.

    Another reason I love the EF: no “liturgists”! I sing in a Gregorian schola now, and the Liber Usualis is our liturgist, along with Cantus Selecti.

    As for public recitation of the rosary before Mass, I can understand that some people who prefer private devotions/prayer before Mass might find it distracting. It can be started 20 min. before Mass so as end ca. 10 min. before Mass, thus providing time for silent reflection; or, if started 5 min. after the end of Mass, if might provide an incentive for the “chatters” to take their conversations out to the vestibule.

    I also don’t always think the theology that is interjected between decades is sound.

    What is being “interjected between decades”? I’ve often heard the Fatima prayer said between decades in public recitations of the Rosary, and have done it myself. But if it’s something else, if someone is interjecting personal reflections or readings from some tract or other, this might be a situation that requires speaking to the pastor. People leading public recitations of the Rosary really need to stick to the conventionally understood customary practice and not try to “customize” it in any way.

  47. NoTambourines says:

    I’ve mentioned before that I’m grateful for the Rosary before the Saturday evening Mass at my parish. It does have a few desirable side effects, like keeping the chit-chat down before Mass, and providing the kids an opportunity to learn and hear prayers (and the Mysteries of the Rosary) that they might not otherwise get exposed to. But I realize the side effects are not the reason it’s done.

    I’ve never detected any sense of coercion or judgment about joining in or not joining in, though it probably helps that it’s a very large church.

  48. I’m not normally one to agree with FrJim, but this time, I do think he has a point. When there’s public praying of the rosary before Mass, while there isn’t coercion per say, I’ll admit that it is semi-difficult for me to prepare for Mass with my own devotions….especially on Thursdays when I don’t pray the Luminous Mysteries….and I tend to use Latin anyways.

  49. Widukind says:

    Several years ago the Vatican (I am unsure of what office) came out with a directory concerning
    the importance and place of devotions in the life of the Church. (I cannot recall the title off hand.)
    One of things it said was that it was acceptable to pray the rosary during exposition. Maybe that pastor (add perhaps frjim too) would benefit from receiving and reading that directory.

  50. Rich says:

    I say go and pray the group rosary in church anyway. You can’t cross a priest’s or even a pastor’s authority in a particular situation when there is no authority to be crossed in that situation, such as when he tells you that you can’t pray a rosary as a group in a church. Would he rather have people yap away at each other in church immediately before and after Mass as a means to build community? Doesn’t want the rosary drowing out old ladies’ gossip?

  51. LisaP. says:

    Well, that’s very interesting.

    The question posed was about saying the Rosary *after* Mass.

    Early one, the comments seem to have been turned to a discussion of whether it’s appropriate *before* Mass.

    The original question seems to me to be asking whether it’s appropriate to pray communally in the church building during times others aren’t using it.

    The “before Mass” question would be whether it’s o.k. to pray communally during a time others are preparing for Mass.

    Anyone here have a problem with public recitation of the rosary *after* Mass? It seems unlikely, doesn’t it?

  52. acardnal says:

    @Lisa P, are you an attorney? ;-)

  53. inIpso says:

    At my Church they always pray the Rosary after one of the daily Masses. I think this is great, but wish that:

    1.) the group would wait to start until 5-10 minutes after Mass to start so we can enjoy that time with Our Lord in silence and adoration. Or if they don’t want to wait then…

    2) at least pray it together and quietly. Instead of a nice prayerful devotion, it always seems to be a competition of who can pray the loudest or most “piously”. Thirty people all trying to stand out in a group makes more noise then prayer. Jesus can hear you even if you pray quietly… you don’t have to try and yell so He can hear you inside the Tabernacle!

  54. Joseph-Mary says:

    The Legion of Mary led a rosary before the weekday morning Masses–starting at 6:30 and rarely do many come in a half hour before Mass; the only ones that do, pray the rosary!!! And the rosary was finished by 6:50. No one ever said a word in complaint and it was not loud. Thsoe few who came in that much before Mass were not much disturbed.

    At weekday Masses, there is quiet before and after Mass. The Saturday vigil is terrible for noise before and after; one cannot pray well beforehand because of the noise. Sunday masses are pretty much quiet before Mass but the decible level explodes after Mass for the few that linger to make thanksgiving.

  55. Johnno says:

    A few good churches I’ve been to, in Canada and in India, have Rosaries being said 1/2 hour before Mass, and usually end about 15-10 mins before the actual Mass. In India, before the 7 pm mass, a rosary is usually begun early. The bells ring at 7, then the Angelus is said. Then Mass begins at 7:05. I see no problems with this. In fact even if I were praying something else (sometimes I show up early to go to Confession and do my penance), it’s not a problem. People praying together in Church is something anyone would expect. it also has the added benefit of keeping the riff raff quiet. Most other Churches just have people talking loudly about any old thing. I’ve been to churches on occasion where people continue to talk loudly and laugh and quarrel even when the Blessed Sacrament is exposed on the altar as if it weren’t even there, nobody even bothered to genuflect. If praying the rosary loudly before and after Mass would put a stop to the Yakkety Yak and encourage those who don’t want to stay to leave and take it outside, that would be a good benefit.

  56. Muriel says:

    I am with the “Legion Of Mary” and we say our rosary at 4:30P.M in our Church as a group with our Pastor.

  57. Centristian says:

    Although I can see how some might find a rosary recited publicly before Mass a bit distracting, I sometimes do go to a church at which that is the practice and it has never interfered with my own preparation, neither have I ever felt guilted because I wasn’t joining in. But that’s me; everybody’s different. Personally, I find the sound of worshipers reciting the rosary comforting and conducive to my own prayers before Mass, not distracting.

    As far as reciting the rosary after Mass is concerned, I think it’s a great idea. In my experience, people tend to be loud and chatty after Mass more so than before Mass. I personally can’t stand it when worshipers talk in church out loud after Mass as if it were a social hall. If a group of people remain to recite the rosary, it clears the chatty cathys out.

  58. Peco says:

    I always chuckle when I see people say that they can’t believe that someone said or did this or that, or when they wonder if you heard it right, with regard to the liturgy or some odd practice. I have to admit it isn’t as bad as a few years ago but I totally believe most of the odd stuff because I have seen a lot of it and continue to. Many people can’t believe or don’t want to believe that this stuff goes on as often as it does. I live in one of the truly wacky dioceses and can believe almost anything.

  59. Nora says:

    Much as I love the rosary, I think it is important to remember it is not part of the public revelation. You can be a perfectly good Catholic and never pray a single decade of it.

    That said, I really like what we do at our parish. There are 2 “every week” public recitations of the rosary. On Saturday, the rosary is at 3 p.m.; we have adoration from the 8 a.m. mass until Benediction at 4, with the Vigil mass at 4:30. The rosary at 3 leaves plenty of time for folks who want silent adoration to get that in, but also is functional for those who want the triple whammy of rosary, benediction and mass in one stop. The second public recitation is after the principle mass on Sunday. The rosary starts about 15 minutes after mass, in a transcept, so they neither distract nor are distracting. The crowd for each varies widely from week to week. Frequently the daily mass crew will pray a rosary after the morning mass, but that just depends: sometimes we request exposition and a holy hour; sometimes we go get breakfast.

    Before mass, the church is largely silent; being a Catholic church, we do have babies to contend with, LOL. We used to have a pre-mass rosary and I will admit to being one of those who hated it. Ignoring it is like sitting down through the National Anthem, in terms of how it endears one to ones fellow parishioners. Participating totally messes with my own rule for preparing for the celebration.

    We scored silence instead by dint of simple effort; some folks left in a huff; others have come in relief. Half an hour before mass, Father has folks “patrolling” for noise and encouraging conversation to move to the narthex. 15 minutes before, Father mixes the side chalices at the credence table and glares effectively at any chit chat, even if quiet. 10 minutes before, the candles are lit and the ushers take over good behavior patrol. The first 6 months were rocky, but the succeeding 4 years have been great and well worth the grumbles.

  60. acardnal says:

    What does “mixes the side chalices” mean?

    One can be a “perfectly good Catholic” and never read the Bible either or the writings of the saints but doing so will not help you grow in holiness or get into heaven with any degree of glory. Praying he Rosary will.

  61. Clinton says:

    There is a precedent for the public recitation of prayers after Mass– the Leonine prayers.
    Evidently, generations of Catholics did not find them intrusive or distracting.

    In this time of Fortnight for Freedom, it seems to me that a public recitation of the rosary
    after Mass would be a great and welcome help. It worked at Lepanto!

    As for those pastors whose solicitude for their flocks inclines them to prohibit any public
    recitation of prayers after Mass, in order to preserve Joe Bagodonuts from distraction
    during his thanksgiving– are these same pastors making similar efforts to prohibit
    the chatter that springs up after Mass? I’d have a great deal more respect for a pastor’s
    decision against public recitations after Mass if he were also vigilant to maintain a holy
    silence in the church.

  62. CatholicByChoice says:

    Hi again! I have been following this discussion. I am a convert to the Catholic Church and so maybe I am very off base here but I do not intend to be disrespectful, I just want to learn from you. Here are my observations: It does not seem very “Christian” to me to have people stating that “they” will get special indulgences and graces by reciting the Rosary in public, regardless of how their behavior may interfere with other people’s efforts and ability to pray. Could this really be what the Pope had in mind when he said this? Did he say you had to pray the Rosary out loud ti get the indulgences? Do you also get your indulgences praying your Rosary silently in public? I wonder whether the Pope did not intend to imply that it is all about YOU and YOU getting YOUR indulgences regardless of how you are negatively impacting the prayers of others? I can understand how much more convenient it might be for YOU to get YOUR indulgences while waiting with others for Mass to begin, because you had to be at in the Church at that time anyway. Does your praying the Rosary as a group out loud before Mass shed the special indulgences and graces on everybody in the room…or just on you? I would like to understand this better. On another note, is it true that the Rosary is a shortened form of lectio divna, intended for use originally by those who did not have the time to practice lectio divina? If so, it would seem to me that there would be also graces and indulgences for practicing lectio divina as well? Thank you for anyone who can help me understand this better.

  63. CatholicByChoice, it was an ancient practice of religious who lived apart from the world to recite the 150 Psalms daily. This is not feasible for laymen living and working in the world, so the devotion arose of saying 150 Hail Marys — one for each Psalm. This is the number of Hail Marys in the body of the traditional, 15-decade Rosary, and for this reason, the Rosary is also known as Mary’s Psalter. St. Dominic gave us the Rosary in the form in which we now have it, which couples vocal prayer with meditation on the mysteries of the life of Christ.

    The Enchiridion of Indulgences says: A plenary indulgence is granted, if the Rosary is recited in a church or public oratory or in a family group, a religious Community or pious association; a partial indulgence is granted in other circumstances. In public recitation, the Mysteries of the Rosary must be announced according to the custom of the place; at least five decades must be recited continuously, and vocal recitation must be accompanied by meditation on the Mysteries.

    As for indulgences in general, please read the Catechism of the Catholic Church, starting at paragraph 1471. This is a doctrine of the Church deserving of respect, belief in which is not optional for a Catholic.

  64. Sue in soCal says:

    My 30 year old single son prays the Rosary before Mass at his parish church. (I’ve had older women in that parish come up and ask me what I did raising him – and my other two children – to instill such devout behavior. Answer: They are that way in spite of what I did – Thanks be to God!)

    He wanted to start a Rosary group to say a Rosary on Sunday at a time convenient for everyone, parishioners, priests, etc. He called, emailed, wrote, spoke to, texted the person the pastor said to contact. (The pastor, or rather, the parish administrator as they are wont to be called here, apparently does not make these decisions. The laity run the parish – literally.) The contact person told my son he could not use the church for the Rosary because it would interfere with the “holy hubbub” (yes, those were his words) inside the church (which is more like a meeting hall, being in the round and all). He could not use the Blessed Sacrament building (yes, the Eucharist is kept in a separate building) because that was a place for silent prayer. He could not use one of the classrooms in their welcome hall/entertainment center because they were, well, booked – ALL the time. It was suggested that the Rosary group could meet in the “prayer garden” which works great unless it is cold and raining or hot and windy and the elderly can hold up to it. My son finally got a concession of 20 minutes in one of the classrooms and then spent about 2 months trying to nail down a time – with the contact person he could never seem to contact. So, in short, yes, I believe it is very possible that the priest in this quaeritur said that the Rosary is private prayer, especially if this is a priest in the Los Angeles Archdiocese.

  65. CatholicByChoice says:

    Miss Anita Moore OP, thank you so much for your very kind response. I read the catechism reference you provided, thank you for that. That is interesting about the indulgences. I will have to spend some time mulling that over. It said the Rosary is a penance…that is a new idea for me…that praying is a penance. We did not learn the Rosary in my RCIA class. In fact, when we candidates experienced our first confession and the Priest told me to say three Hail Mary’s, I thought “ut-oh.” I didn’t know how to say the Hail Mary, neither did my husband. I sat down and prayed as best I could, then came home after class and turned on EWTN and prayed it with the Nuns. I don’t think most converts are drawn to the Rosary, and I still have no calling for the Rosary. But I do LOVE to pray to Jesus!

    There is one thing that motivates my prayers, I pray out of a deep love for God. I pray to, for just a moment at least, to feel myself sitting at the feet of Jesus and just being there with him, listening to him, loving him. I do not pray in hopes of getting something in return for it. I have never been drawn to the Rosary, mainly because of the constant speaking that it requires. The constant talking required with the Rosary leaves no space for me to be quiet and LISTEN to God.

    Again, thank you for your response. I doubt that I will ever be drawn to praying the Rosary but who knows what surprises God has in store for me.

  66. Nora says:

    “What does “mixes the side chalices” mean?”

    Before the consecration. a bit of water is added to the wine, with a prayer relating to the intent. Father does this before mass for the chalices that will be used to distribute the Precious Blood to the lay communicants.

  67. Suburbanbanshee says:

    1. Indulgences aren’t a “reward.” They’re a grace, a free gift from Mother Church. You do have to rip open the paper to get the present, of course.

    2. Just because you love to do something, that doesn’t make it not a penance. And when Catholics do penance, we don’t necessarily do it for ourselves. There are many people in this world who sin and don’t think about it, who never pray and don’t think about it. There are many Catholic prayers and devotions designed to help others do penance for them, as a free gift to them.

    3. Most people who say the Rosary are able (thanks to the memorized nature of the prayers, and after a little practice) to fruitfully divide their attention between their mouth saying the Rosary and their mind meditating on the Mysteries, or their mind being quiet with God. If you’re not one of those people, then obviously the Rosary isn’t the prayer for you.

    4. Although the crazy amounts of noise in churches today are definitely not right, there are ways to learn to create your own silence around you, and to ignore most noises. If you read stuff written by the saints, you will see that they also dealt with distractions. (Especially since the quieter it is, the more we tend to hear tiny noises that can drive us crazy, like breathing or corduroy pants or the turning of a page.) There will always be something to disturb your focus, if you let it, so it’s better to just accept it as part of prayer in this fallen world.

    Try telling yourself beforehand that all the noises are pretty much going in one ear and out the other, and they are totally unimportant as they float on through. Don’t get mad or frustrated; just keep going with what you’re doing.

    If that doesn’t help, you can always bring earplugs, and take them out again when it’s time for Mass. Of course, you’ll hear your heartbeat and breathing sounding pretty loud, but there you go.

  68. Imrahil says:

    I figure that the group started to pray the rosary and the pastor was outraged because they did not previously asked him for permission or even including it into the parish bulletin for this week. Hence he said: Privately silently yes, as a group no. You have to ask me first, and this two weeks before when the parish bulletin is not yet printed.

    At least around here, while I guess that the combination of spontaneous and public (loudly) would be desirable as a possibility, I do guess it would by general feeling be considered rebellious in nature… be as much Bavarian as you may, sometimes you can not help to be German.

  69. LisaP. says:

    acardnal, Hah!
    No, but I play one while doing breakfast dishes, I guess. . . . and I argue a lot. . . .

  70. Tina in Ashburn says:

    Duh. Of course the Rosary is a vocal [must be audible and your lips must move] and group prayer – its always best recited as a group.

    I tend to agree with the sentiment about ‘coercion” when praying the Rosary or any group prayers before or after Mass. This is because the silence and stillness is utterly hijacked and I cannot focus on any recollection or personal prayers.
    In my registered parish, rosary is said afterwards. Many people get up and leave in frustration because recollection is made impossible. Oh that they would be quieter, or move to another part of the church so we could pray. Some of us have tried going to our car and trying to pray there after Mass, but that isn’t the same as sitting before the Tabernacle. Those that have asked the pastor to have Rosary before Mass have been yelled at or stared at in stony uncomprehending silence.

    However, depending on what state a parish is in, circumstances would mitigate my annoyance if there is no other way to stop the din of irreverent behavior.

    If the Rosary is to be said, let it be before Mass and end in time to prepare for Mass. After receiving Holy Communion I desperately need silence and stillness to promote the best recollection I can with the presence of Jesus. I don’t understand how folks can not want to sit with this Jesus that they have just received, in the most intimate interaction this side of Heaven. [I did used to be one of those that would jump in on vocal prayer anytime, but now I understand better the gifts of contemplation, what a clueless dummy I was! ] The longer and more intense your recollection after receiving, the longer the effects of this Communion. How can you hear what God is saying to you in that intimate moment without silence and stillness? I have to exert huge effort to quash distractions in my chaotic life in order to be recollected and still.

    Saying the Rosary at Holy Hour sort of takes away the whole reason you ARE at Holy Hour, which is silent adoration. A few prayers or songs here and there if Holy Hour is actually longer than hour might be okay. Constant noise during Adoration is counter-productive.

  71. Centristian says:


    Miss Anita Moore OP said…

    “…it was an ancient practice of religious who lived apart from the world to recite the 150 Psalms daily. This is not feasible for laymen living and working in the world, so the devotion arose of saying 150 Hail Marys — one for each Psalm. […] the Rosary is also known as Mary’s Psalter. St. Dominic gave us the Rosary in the form in which we now have it, which couples vocal prayer with meditation on the mysteries of the life of Christ.”

    Well, okay…but there’s a big chunk of the history of the development of the rosary left out of that response, and the idea that it was instituted by St. Dominic (either at the Virgin Mary’s request or in any other way) is recognized today as a legend that doesn’t quite square with history.

    Father William Saunders in his essay “A History of the Rosary” writes:

    “Tradition does hold that St. Dominic (d. 1221) devised the rosary as we know it. Moved by a vision of our Blessed Mother, he preached the use of the rosary in his missionary work among the Albigensians, who had denied the mystery of Christ. Some scholars take exception to St. Dominic’s role in forming the rosary. The earliest accounts of his life do not mention it, the Dominican constitutions do not link him with it and contemporaneous portraits do not include it as a symbol to identify the saint.

    In 1922, Dom Louis Cougaud stated, ‘The various elements which enter into the composition of that Catholic devotion commonly called the rosary are the product of a long and gradual development which began before St. Dominic’s time, which continued without his having any share in it, and which only attained its final shape several centuries after his death.'”

    As it happens, there were no Hail Marys at all in the original rosary; the beads didn’t begin as a Marian devotion, at all. The rosary was originally known as the “Paternoster” as it was used to count 50 recitations of the Lord’s Prayer. The recitation of Lord’s Prayer on the beads wouldn’t be supplanted by the Angelic Salutation (which only later would be expanded upon, in stages, to become today’s “Hail Mary”) until the Middle Ages, but before the birth of St. Dominic. I would recommend reading the very interesting history of the rosary at the Catholic Encyclopedia:


    It’s very eye-opening.

  72. TravelerWithChrist says:

    I went to a rosary and funeral for an elderly woman several years back. The priest didn’t know HOW to say the rosary. He had a cheat-sheet of sorts, but still managed to mess it up pretty bad.
    I think this is more common that we think.
    Another very charismatic priest I know carries the rosary, but promotes and uses it for the Divine Mercy Chaplate and as a counter for ejaculations – he didn’t like the rosary as a prayer (never asked if he knew the rosary). He wasn’t real big on Mary.
    We must ask Mary to pray that their hearts and minds be opened. Imagine a priest, who performs in persona Christi, who doesn’t want HIS Mother.

  73. TravelerWithChrist says:

    There’s a plenary vs a partial indulgence for public or group recitation of the rosary vs silently per individual…

  74. dominic1955 says:

    The St. Dominic giving us the rosary is a beautiful “pious legend” even if it isn’t historically accurate. In the prayer for the Rosary Confraternity it mentions St. Dominic who received such grace and strength from the rosary, etc. Kind of like the old Golden Legend story about St. Christopher. I personally think it is good to have a handle on the “real” history, but in so doing we do not need to dismantle the pious legends.

    As for devotions before or after Mass, I say the more the merrier. I would personally like to have it like it was back in the old days or how it is in some Eastern Churches-the church being a buzz of devotions, liturgies etc. etc. We have a certain officious orderliness in our American culture which tends to make people just follow along. Witness the way our lines for communion work, etc. I personally have no cumpunction whatsoever with sitting myself down and doing the Office while someone is doing the Rosary in public. I don’t like the pace, often times, so I do my own thing. I think that’s the way it should be.

  75. marknelza says:

    @acardnal: You ask “why is it okay to pray the rosary after Mass but not before?”

    It is not a matter of it being wrong to pray the Rosary at any specific time, such as before Mass. It is not wrong! It is rather about showing consideration for the way various people prepare for Mass and not doing anything that prevents them from doing so or makes it difficult for them to do so.

    After Mass, especially when a short amount of time is allowed for those who wish to first silently say their prayers of thanksgiving, means that the group praying the Rosary offers a fair compromise to accommodate all parishioners needs.

    As for your other comment about people not praying before Mass and instead engaging in conversations. You are quite right of course. Many do have conversations or they sit reading the local Catholic newspaper, like they are on the park bench, turning the pages noisily and showing the person next to them articles of interest. They’re that little stone inside ones shoe…?

  76. Suburbanbanshee says:

    If you see somebody with a Rosary cheatsheet, it often means that they were taught a different form of the Rosary than what is common in the area. There are a lot of different versions. A lot. The popularity of the Blue Army in the US tended to change the balance a lot; but there are still tons of approved, indulgenced Rosaries and chaplets and formats, each popular with different ages of people and ethnicities and religious orders. Go across a parish boundary, and you can be in a whole new Rosary world.

    Of course, if the priest didn’t know the Rosary, it’s good that he learned sometime!

    dominic1955 — I agree. It’s much more comfy at the old downtown churches, where somebody’s lighting a candle, somebody else is doing the Stations, and somebody else is running through their prayerbook, while people are doing the Rosary and Adoration before Mass. If I don’t want to say the Rosary, I don’t have to; we can all pray together before Mass without praying the same things at the same time.

  77. Johnno says:

    “the idea that it was instituted by St. Dominic (either at the Virgin Mary’s request or in any other way) is recognized today as a legend that doesn’t quite square with history.”

    Please explain. I without a doubt believe it was certainly the case that this arose through supernatural revelation, and that the rosary is a powerful prayer encouraged and upheld by Saints, Popes, and the Queen of Heaven herself. There seems to be an underlying current trying to undermine the Rosary and do away with the Virgin Mary altogether.

    Catholics may not be required to do a lot of things, such as pray the rosary or seek indulgences, but anyone who ignores these free gifts from heaven would be a fool. If not for yourself, these can at least be sought on behalf of others.

  78. Banjo pickin girl says:

    a rosary cheat sheet can indicate a convert too, though not usually a priest. i do know a priest who is a convert who doesn’t have much devotion to Mary, at least not like the cradle CAtholics do, that is something that is learned early and often can’t be caught up on.

  79. Nora says:

    I always use a cheat sheet when my individual voice is likely to be heard, whether leading a devotion or as one of a small number at a liturgy. I figure Father uses a Missal for a good reason and it isn’t that he is unfamiliar with the mass.

  80. lucy says:

    I am having some trouble following what some priests are saying here. That they would never allow a group rosary recitation before Mass?? This seems to be the opposite thinking from what I’ve seen in some churches – a lot of loud talking and plans for after Mass across the aisles, etc etc etc.

    Our traditional Mass is the only one at our parish. We advertise that we pray a rosary beginning at 3pm. It ends 10 min before our 3:30pm Mass (a lovely time of day for Mass). There is plenty of silence prior to Mass for folks to prepare themselves.

    And to speak to the “someone will feel weird about not praying the rosary”…..what??? If folks want to participate, they come early, if not they come whenever. I have never looked at someone and thought, “oh that person isn’t praying the rosary with us, they must be in deep, dark sin.” This is ridiculous thinking. I’ve never thought anything of the kind. Most folks who pray the rosary are fully engaged in kneeling or sitting and praying, why on earth would you think it would make them feel bad if they don’t join in? It seems like a less than charitable thing to say.

    I am glad that we pray the rosary in community before Mass (when else would we pray it in community?). Many people travel a distance to come to this one traditional Mass. Are we expected to trapse down to the parish at another time? We are thankful that our pastor has not subdued our desire to pray in community and reap the graces that are abundantly available to us for doing so.

  81. lucy says:

    And while Fr. Jim has a lovely organ and someone to play it, we don’t. We also cannot pray a rosary after Mass, because we must make the chapel look as though we’ve never been there and that takes time. Plus, the next Mass is coming in while we’re turning it back into a Novus Ordo chapel. There would be zero time after Mass.

  82. frjim4321 says:

    Seems like a lot of this depends on the circumstances of the given parish.

    Since junior high I have found most rosary people to be pushy and unpleasant. Probably why I react to this subject the way I do.

    In high school seminary the guy who boasted of his 15 decade rosary was the meanest sob you would ever meet – Greg P. A rich kid too – his family had their own gasoline pump at home – he never had to pay for gas.

    Just lots and lots of bad experiences with roasart people.

  83. frjim4321 says:

    Lucy, Hi. Just a good organist. The organ is jist a big old Allen appliance. My toaster oven works better.

  84. eulogos says:

    Some ladies pray the Rosary before Divine Liturgy at our Byzantine Catholic parish. I found this out one time when I got my times mixed up and came five minutes less than an hour early for Liturgy. I am sure our current priest is not happy about this, because he is an “Orthodox in communion with Rome” type of guy and thinks the Rosary is a Western devotion he wants no part of . He wears a (don’t know how to spell this) chotke, a loop of knots in yarn or string, for praying the Jesus prayer, on his arm. But I think he knows better than to object. He is never there anyway; he is rushing to get there from his other parish during that time.

    So when I got there so early and the ladies were saying the Rosary, did I feel sort of compelled to join in? Well, yes. Actually I was terrified they would be doing the Luminous mysteries which I have never learned, and they would ask me to recite the next decade and my ignorance would be exposed. But they were praying the glorious mysteries; maybe they always do on Sunday? And there was one person leading the entire time. Whew! So was this a terrible imposition on me? Not at all. I am sure it was good for me.

    By the way, in this parish, no one would chat in Church before Divine Liturgy, rosary or no.
    Susan Peterson

  85. CatholicByChoice says:

    Hi Suburbanbanshee, thank you for your very kind response. It was helpful. I am fortunate that in my Diocese I have so far never experienced the level of noise before Mass that many of you have mentioned. For the most part I experience that as more of a background noise that is easier for me to tune out than the group recitation of the Rosary. I am by no means an “anti-Rosary” person, I just really do wish that everyone could have an equal shot at preparing themselves for Mass in the manner that works best for them. Though I only recently entered the Catholic Church (2011) I have been practicing silent prayer for more than 20 years. I have been an Oblate and volunteer at a Benedictine monastery for five years, and it is my experience with the monastery that made me want to join the Church. Again, Suburbanbanshee, thanks so much for your helpful reply.

    Tina in Ashburn, I LOVE what you wrote about silent contemplation!

    Centristian, thank you for your helpful response and for the link! I greatly appreciate it. That is very close to what I have understood about the Rosary.

    To Johnno, thank you for your comments. I regret that you view me as a fool but that is unfortunately most likely true. I think I am frequently a fool. I do strive to improve myself by reviewing the 7 Deadly Sins, and examining my conscience to see whether I am making any progress. I found a great deal of help in this area in Cassian’s Conferences.

    I love the idea of saying the Rosary after Mass. I think that is the perfect solution!

  86. LisaP. says:

    I guess I need my own bumper stickers, one would say, “Clueless dummy who still values vocal prayer” and the other would say “Pushy and Unpleasant”!

  87. Granny says:

    At the local parish there is no way that any private prayer could take place. There is to much talking, walking around to visit etc. Oh wait… they talk THROUGH Mass too. I’ve learned more ‘dark family secrets’ while trying to pay attention during Mass than you can believe.
    I think one huge problem is that people don’t think about what the Mass actually is. To most it’s someplace you have to go, no real joy in being allowed to participate in a weekly miracle… just a habit. So why not do the Divine Mercy Chaplet before Mass instead of the Rosary. The Chaplet would HAMMER home what was about to take place and that SIN was the reason that Christ had to die for us…. OH WAIT!!! That wouldn’t be nice would it. We shouldn’t talk about sin, it might hurt someone’s feelings. Shame on me.

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