If the church is on fire, tell the rector.
Otherwise, in the final 10 minutes before a service starts, try to resist peppering your priest with questions or reports about some failure of performance – people or facilities (or both).
In those 10 minutes, your priest is trying to focus on leading worship. He or she is vesting, double-checking the procession, mentally reviewing a sermon, and greeting people. The priest is praying with the choir, conferring with the organist, touching base with the Altar Guild, and possibly ducking into the restroom.
I’m not saying your priest should be inaccessible before worship. But I am suggesting that we all step back and ask ourselves whether our comments can wait until coffee hour. I doubt we would worry a surgeon with questions about the boiler system shortly before the first cut. I hope we would give a few minutes of reflection for a business leader preparing to address stockholders.
We should be cognizant of the responsibility and privilege that comes with leading worship and guiding people to renew and strengthen their spiritual lives through the liturgy….
I propose we take a page from the mother’s handbook, which indicates a waiting period after eating before the children can return to the pool.
What do you think?