From a reader…
I have read that caring for the sick (i.e. children) lifts the Sunday Obligation to hear Holy Mass.
Does caring for a sick child lift it for the entire day, or would parents be required to go to Mass “in shifts”?
Thank you for all that you do in Our Lord’s Vineyard. Be assured of my family’s prayers.
As parents, your obligation to your children overrides just about everything else. Of course you must, as we all must, love God even more than you love your spouse and children, but in terms of your vocation and its duties, taking care of your children is at the top of the heap.
If a child’s illness requires your presence at home, then you do not have the obligation to go to Mass on Sunday.
However, I like the fact that you brought up going “in shifts”, which I take means going alternately rather than in long,.
Sure! If that is a viable solution, spouses, especially parents with lots of kids who might be at a difficult age to manage in church, can always go in shifts. As a matter of fact, that might give parents a chance to pray at church.
While I understand that parents – often deprived of lots of facetime with their children during the week because of the restraints of jobs and so forth – like going to church all together as a family, it might be that the Shift Solution could also be helpful, not only for the individual parent, but also for fellow congregants who may not be as filled with joy at the antics of your little stupor mundi.
However, this is now verging toward The Third Rail™.