To the editor:
This is with reference to letter “God present in all prayer” (February Courier) which was a response to the January letter “Noise shows disrespect.”
God may be present in all prayer, but all places are not conducive to prayer. Although God is everywhere, in every person, place and thing, certain persons, places and things are more holy than others.
A church, any church, is a sacred place, set apart, specifically for prayer and worship. Our beloved Roman Catholic Church, in particular, is holy ground because in the Tabernacle is enshrined the Blessed Sacrament, the Real Presence, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ.
The writer speaks of Vatican II document on the sacred liturgy as citing “four presences of the Liturgy and the first is the gathering of the congregation.” What is the purpose for the gathering? Is it a call to socialize? No. The very reason is for congregational prayer. Nonetheless, individual spiritual preparedness is crucial for the community to become one holy people worshipping in spirit and truth! After the Eucharistic Adoration has concluded, the socializing then can happen over coffee and doughnuts, or wine and dine, or whatever “social” activity is planned.
The complaints of disturbing noisy chit-chat prior to a Eucharistic Liturgy are legitimate. Not only does the noise show insensitive disrespect, it violates the very sacredness of the place and profanes the very purpose for “the gathering of the congregation.”
Lest we forget, it was Jesus who insisted, “My house is meant to be a house of prayer.”