Firstly, the clergy. It may be very distracting for the priest, when, halfway through the Eucharistic Prayer, a child starts to make a loud noise. Some older priests, in particular, might find this makes the saying of the prayer more or less impossible. This may be particularly so in some modern churches that have a terrible acoustic that magnifies every noise, particularly those that are high pitched.

One feels for such clergy, at least some of the time, but what they must do is really simple: grin, bear it, and carry on. They must raise mind and heart to God, and pray the Mass as if they were in the most silent of convent chapels. After all, back in the day, many priests celebrated Mass on battlefields with shells bursting around them. They too carried on and did not complain.

If the priest stops the Mass and demands the child be removed – and this does sometimes happen, though rarely, it has to be said – this will effectively hold the parents up to public blame, and ensure that they never come back to church. Besides which, the parents do not need to be told – they already know that the child’s behaviour is not good, and are already, probably, doing their best to keep the child quiet.

What should parents do? They are the second group to be challenged by the child. They are probably doing all they can already – after all, they live with their child full time. They are the experts in child management.

They could take the child out if this can be done quietly and unobtrusively; though sometimes this creates more fuss than it saves. They may feel very embarrassed by their child’s behaviour, and the priest should make it clear to them, I think, that he really doesn’t mind. After all, a very quiet church would also be a dead church, if it were child-free.

This brings us on to the third set of people: The rest of the congregation.



Join the discussion 144 Comments

  • Judyth says:


    • sarah cutter says:

      in answer 2 the question about what do u do when a child crys during mass. well with all due respect to parents and i dont want 2 seem 2 harsh here why bring a young child 2 church in the first place of course they r going 2 get resestless wen they dont understand wat is going on ,havent the parents heard of babysitters or surely some family member or the neighbour could watch the child 4 an hour on a sunday.its v distracting 4 the priest and for the congregation ihave heard young children screaming at the tops of their lungs during the mass.i know that the priests in the latin rite way back yrs ago wud not ha tolerated it

      • Jsun says:

        Jesus said “let the children come to me, and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven” Mt 19:14

        • Tmblondi says:

          As a parent of recently small children, I too had difficulty at times keeping them quiet but I did two things that helped greatly: (1) I sat at or near the front so they could see what was going on and not the backs of adults; (2) I brought age appropriate quiet toys/activities for a distraction
          Also, I was heartily encouraged when a priest said one day when several children were having difficulty with restlessness, “God bless all the little voices” during his sermon.
          Also, you always take small children to a community gathering, otherwise the community will not know them and they the community…it takes a village to raise a child

        • Bob .M says:

          That is the answer .

        • NiCHOLAS says:

          Absolutely and i believe Jesus already knew that children could be unstable due to their infancy yet He said ‘let the children come to me,
          and do not hinder them ‘

          • Therese Nunez says:

            Children learn how to behave and understand the mass when they are taken to church. Many churches have cry rooms for this reason.

        • Violet says:

          I have a small child and he comes to mass with us for several reasons. The first one being that i want him to grow up in Church. I love having my family together in God’s presence. I am assuming that you do not have children. I am confused as to why you think you deserve to be in God’s presence more than my child. Jesus said to let the children come unto him. It might be time to reflect on the reason you attend mass and ask God to soften your heart to all of his children, young and old. As a mother I need to pray that God softens my heart towards judgemental people who wpuld deny my child the blessings of the church.

        • Children should be brought to church at the earliest age so that as they grow,
          celebrating mass becomes part of their lives. Then in the event that a child cries, the parent should be in position to handle the situation appropriately since he or she understands the child better than anyone else. By the way children are good at reminding parents about church going. May The Almighty God Bless you always.

      • Claire Tavares says:

        I agree with you disturbing a mass and not be able to follow it its the most frustrating situation you can find yourself my children where very good and well behaved i warned them that were we were going they had to behave and if they didn’t one look was enough.

      • Meleane says:

        We have a ‘Crying Room’ for parents with children, they have an intercom where they can hear the priest saying mass, I always bring some goodies in case a child cries. I domt have children nut have plenty of nieces and nephews which i adore and love, children need to be present in mass so they will understand and appreciate when tney get older the reason why we go to church. Love and Peace 🙂 <3

      • Rose MarieBenoit says:

        If parents don’t bring their children to church when they are young, Sara, what makes you think they will want to go when they are older?

      • Fr Ged says:

        Children are the life-blood of the Church, they are our future. If children are not brought to church as they grow, what chance do they have of being comfortable in the presence of the Lord when they are older? Please continue to bring them.
        1 Bring a piece of paper and crayons by all means (not permanent markers as they stain the benches and people’s coats), use any quiet means to distract in the early stages.
        2 Find a church where there is a children’s liturgy, or ask to start one!
        3 If they cry or bawl take them out for a few minutes, have a little walk / toilet break / drink or snack
        4 Don’t worry about the tuts, smile and say one for them!
        5 Why not say a prayer on the way to church? It may help your little ones (and you get in the right frame of mind) and, if you are in a calm and prayerful frame of mind your little ones are more likely to be calm and prayerful too.

      • Deila says:

        Sarah, with all due respect, Jesus said to let the children come to Him, because theirs is the Kingdome of God. As Catholic parents it is our duty and responsibility to introduce our children to the Church. Would you take your child out of schoouncomfortableis not quiet and behaving? Should Adults who love to chit chat during the entire mass be asked to stay home? Children gets restless because of their short attention span; that is normal. Parents should know to just take their child to the back or bathroom. For older children, explain that behaving in church is as important as behaving in school and at home. Babies; feed them, change their diapers before mass, and make them as comfortable as you can. It worked for me with all three of my boys. Mass and God are the only thing we should not take from our children because of unacceptable behavior.

      • irene says:

        Clearly you are not a parent

        • Jennifer says:

          I am a parent & strongly believe that you should NOT bring ill behaved children to Mass. I went the other day & the careless mom brought 3 little girls with obviously no discipline & let them run around the church during mass. The Priest lost his place several times. People were staring at the mom. When the girls came back to their seat, the mom gave them wind-up toys. Really? This was even more distracting. Every Catholic church should have a study class for younger children so the parents & congregation could attend Mass in peace. I come to Mass for God & listening to his word not a daycare circus. Every Baptist church that I know has classes for younger children but why don’t Catholics. So many of my friends have changed to the Baptist churches because of the many resources for children. Of course, the children will attend when they’re older because the class would prepare them for Mass!

          • Ancuta says:

            Really? Because of the noises made of little children they changed the church? I’m shocked; where is the catholic faith and trust and kindness and compassion and patience and love and “let the children come to me”?

          • Layla says:

            Jennifer if most your friends changed to other denominations because of naughty children their faith wasn’t strong in the first place. What a weak answer.

      • Ryan says:

        Every child has every bit the right and duty to be at mass as you do. No matter how small or loud.

      • Ellea says:

        Your comment is ridiculous. That is the attitude that drives people away from the church. I do not usually comment but I could not resist. You obviously do not have children. Mass is for the FAMILY to worship God together.

      • Okeke says:

        I think the best way is for the parent to seat closeto the exit door. Use d door as soon as the baby starts crying.
        Don’t prevent the kids from attending church activities at all else they will stop attending mass/service when they are on their own.

      • Anna Pacheco says:

        My parents went to 2 different masses in order to avoid the chance that a child may cry or misbehave during mass. It worked for my family.

      • Sylvia Guyton says:

        Children should be taught that they are part of the congregation and therefore should be welcomed. How ever will they learn to behave and be respectful if they are brought to Mass weekly and they will learn it is part of their life. Putting them somewhere for an hour is NOT the answer.

        As a mother of 3, my children have been going to church since they were in the womb!

        Parents don’t want to discipline children. They just want them to behave without the work.

      • Nancy says:

        It is commendable that parents introduce children to Church and God at an early age. There may be some mishaps along the way, but fellow Parishioners should encourage participation and allow parents the opportunity to get out without being criticized. Shame on those that don’t see the bigger picture.

      • Children do not learn to behave in church by being kept out of church. They are baptized members of the Catholic Church just like you are and with just as much right to be in church as you have.

    • Crying kids like good intentions should be carried out as soon as possible.

    • Jesus said bring the children to me so they may too learn…. that’s why 🙂

    • Gabriel says:

      I think it is the onus of the church ushers to quietly ask the parents to bring the child outside until he or she stops crying.

    • Jackie says:

      There was a comment made that parents should leave their small children with a baby sitter or family member —- these same little babies are the purest beings amongst the rest of us. You go to church as a family you celebrate as a family — the church is one family as well.
      We’re doing the right thing bearing the burden of taking our babies to church with us. It’s why we got married in the first place– according to our religion. And while we’re at it— Pope Francis also supports breast feeding during the mass. 🙂

    • Kumakech Michael says:

      Give the children your attention as Jesus did.

  • I like to become a Roman Catholic.

    • Carlos Estrada says:

      Good for you!

    • Nancy sfo says:

      go to the closest Roman Catholic Church to your home and pick up a bulletin or go on-line and google Roman Catholic Churches nearest your home. There will be a contact number to call so you can ask questions on become a Roman Catholic. Many blessings to you.

    • Mario says:

      contact the nearest Catholic parish in your area. God bless. praying for you

    • Prince says:

      I’m very proud of you Lan, focus on God, pray always to God for direction. His love and mercies endure forever. Be blessed sweet brethren.

    • joy says:

      No other church that claims to be true church instituted by Jesus Christ Himself but the Catholic Church. You can reseach to verify its succession down to St Peter whom Jesus build the His church.

      • Athena says:

        Actually Joy, the Orthodox Church both the Byzantine and Egyptian Coptics also claim to be the one true Church founded by Christ. I’m not saying that they are but they also do claim to be. Just saying for informational purposes.

        • Cecilia says:

          Athena, the Byzantine Church is in line with Rome and the Pope. It is a Catholic Church, but of the Eastern rite, and not the Western Rite like the Roman Catholic Church. There are some differences, but not many between the two.

      • mary says:

        It is true but nobody try to reaserch the truth. Other denominations always try to oppose. I don’t know why ?? Leaders of the church may do mistake, but Catholic church will never end because God already builted from the beginning..

    • Lan Ngoc Thi Le… bless you on your search….. I am part of the RCIA ministry at our parish and I would encourage you to contact your local parish and check out a class or two…. the church is there to support you on your journey… i would also encourage you to start attending mass and go to a few churches if you need to and find a place that you feel at home…. i attend many different parishes when unable to go to my regular parish and many Catholics at mass may not seem very open or inviting do not let that scare you off… “The desire for God is written in the human heart, because man is created by God and for God; and God never ceases to draw man to himself. Only in God will he find the truth and happiness he never stops searching for.”(CCC27) ….

      • That so true…… AMEN Sis.

      • Mxolisi Leonard says:

        thats true Philip

      • A Mass can be a pretty intimidating place for someone who doesn’t understand what is happening. Trying to figure out what is going on, trying to understand what is being said, knowing ‘when’ to stand, sit, kneel etc. Returning to the Mass after the best part of 30 years a lapsed catholic, I was all over the place at first as I tried to remember what was going on and desperate to get it right, frightened about looking odd and doing the wrong thing and upsetting all the strangers around me, so would very much advise you to spend some time getting instruction first. Chances are if you get it wrong nobody will notice and certainly nobody should be upset particularly if you tell them you are new to the faith etc. We are family, and want to help. If your local church is kept open at certain times, it would surely be good to spend some time just sitting in His presence, the peace I get simply having a place to go without phones, email etc and just sit and think about what He is and what He has done for me. to talk over my hopes and fears. An encounter with God to savour without the distraction of being worried about what we are or should be doing.
        I am part of the evangelical movement in my church and we bring people new to the church along to what we call Cell groups, held in peoples homes it is an opportunity to learn and give and receive support. a chance to talk about living in your faith and how you have been touched by Him in your daily life. it makes it much easier for people new to the faith when they first attend a Holy Mass to do so with a group of people and already aware of what is going to happen and your role and responsibility in the sacrifice. Family Masses can sometimes be a bit manic, particularly if there are a lot of harassed parents trying to keep lots of little ones in order. It can seem a bit irreverent to the uninformed looking on but the truth is it’s family and kids are always going to be at there worst at the most inappropriate times. don’t be put off coz it’s all a bit weird at first. God has called you and now is the time that the devil will try to block you from answering that call with every trick he has in his very large bag

      • pamela wurst says:

        I want to be Catholic too- I frequently attend Mass and no one is open or inviting to me & I haven’t a clue how to join the church. I mostly get instructions from sites like this. Why is this?

        • Homero says:

          Announcements at the end of mass usually encourage anyone interested in participating or assisting. This is an excellent way to introduce yourself and demonstrate your desires. Immediately, you will feel at home and received with open arms.
          Been a Catholic all my life and just in the last year did more than just attend Sunday mass.
          Being that this post is not so recent, I pray you already did this.
          God bless you.

    • Nita says:

      I just want to clarify, the difference between Catholic and Roman Catholic before you convert.The Pope belongs to Catholic, I don’t know before the difference between the 2.

      • The term Roman Catholic is or was a derogatory term, and an implication that Catholics first duty is to Rome rather than the Country they are citizens. Catholics don’t tend to see it that way and often use it in reference to themselves, it’s also lost its status as an insult and accepted as a reference to the fact that the Bishop of Rome (The Pope is our spiritual head.

        • “Catholic” is from the Greek word “Katholikismos” which means “Universal”. Most Christians recite the Nicene Creed (“credo” = “I believe” in Latin) saying “I believe in one holy catholic and apostolic church”. Anglicans, Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholics and Protestant denominations, i.e. most of the world’s Christians, affirm this. The Roman (i.e. based in Rome) Catholic Church split from what is now called the Eastern Orthodox Church (based in Constantinople, now Istanbul) in 1054. If you’ve been following the news, you’ll know that the Pope (Bishop of Rome) and Patriarch of Constantinople have met up recently and are trying to reconcile their differences. It is all the work of the Holy Spirit.

    • kelly1 says:

      You are very welcome. The church loves to bring in New people

    • lindarcooper says:

      Please do become a Roman Catholic, the faith is so beautiful. You would be so very welcome.

    • martina says:

      See any roman catholic priest in ur area, an praying for u God bless u Lab.

    • I hope you have spoken to a priest by now – not necessarily in your home parish, although that might help. There are lots of resources online, but I would strongly recommend you purchase a copy of “Compendium of the Catechism of the Roman Catholic Church”. It’s not very expensive, but it’s the most comprehensive and concise introduction to the Faith you will find. I began attending RCIA classes in 2007 and was Received into the Catholic Church in 2008. It was the best decision I have made in my life. God bless you.

    • SheBob says:

      I just read this. Contact the Catholic Church closest to you. The Catholic Church has a study program for non Catholics who want to convert; its called RCIA. The church staff will give you contact information. Go to mass and get involved in the church activities. Go to a catholic book store they will also have literature. May God bless you during your search.

    • Deila says:

      Lan, our doors are open… No locks; no keys. Just push open the door… welcome.

    • Dave says:

      Find the nearest parish to your house, ask to join RCIA begin in September each year. Baptism followed end of this beautiful journey at Easter around April.
      God bless you.

    • talk to your local Catholic Church Hon they will lead the way!

  • Nancysfo says:

    Most churches have a 'crying room' located in the back of the church with speakers so the congregation in the room hears the Mass. The intention on the 'crying room' is so parents can still attend Mass with their small children and babies and not leave Mass while they are fussy. It may not be so distracting to the celebrant, however, sitting/kneeling so close to a child who is very vocal is distracting and the parent is being very rude in not taking the child away. When parents are in the main church area, they know when their child becomes fussy it's time to remove them so they won't distract others. It's called common sense and no parent should ever feel that when a priest speaks with them about the distraction that they aren't accepted. The priest should speak with them alone and away from public hearing. Priests should stop treating people like they don't want to hurt their feeling when someone does wrong or need to be corrected. The priest is the leader of the flock and his duty to to instruct. It's not the childs fault, but rather the adult. Bringing toys, food etc. to church for the children is also a distraction. This, of course, does not include baby's with bottles or stuffed toys that don't make any noise. It's up to the parents to teach their young children the purpose of going to Mass and have reverence and respect.

    • Mr. M says:

      So whatever happened to Jesus saying “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these?" Is not Mass supposed to be heaven on earth? As a parent it IS my respsonibility to teach my child appropriate church behavior which includes keeping them quiet by modeling appropriate behavior…granted 2 year olds pose a greater challenge…but the priest, being the imitator of Christ should be kind and as patient as Christ was right? ESPECIALLY toward children….I will keep taking my child to mass because she deserves to be in the presence of Our Lord….If she gets out of hand,…well then I will do what I can to remove her but not entirely…But I am sure that as a covenant of families under Christ, they should be very understanding and patient since they have, after all, had children themselves…

      • Pam Cowles says:

        Jesus knew what he was doing, when he said let the little ones come to me. If we don't start early bringing them to Mass, then at what age?
        Children learn by exposure and imitation. I once had two very young children who were misbehaving and I was mortified and hope that no one had noticed. On the way out the Priest put him arm around my shoulders and said "Don't worry, My Mom said that I was the worst child in church, and look where I am today!" God bless and keep bringing the children!

        • Linda says:

          What a loving and generous response given to you by your Priest. More should be so understanding. Parenting is difficult especially with a young child. We all do or best and if we believe children should be attending with the parents, then Priest should give the parents his support and not make them feel bad or humiliated when the child acts out. We have all been there and patience is the key.

        • lindarcooper says:

          you are very lucky, what a wonderful Priest you have.

      • Nancysfo says:

        Why is it when someone is given factual advise that they turn to using the bible in debate. Yes, Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me.’ He also said, ‘be silent in the name of The Lord for I am here to tell you great things’. I’m not being rude either and I have had children who became fussy. I used the crying room, which is built for just that reason, so not to disturb people who are in prayer. Some parents just don’t get it that they think, ‘well, we’re here and we have the right to be here and all of you just get over it. My children will fuss and yell and throw toys and play games on their devices in church all they want and there’s nothing any one can do about it.’ It’s called being self-centered and rude. Babies and young children learn from adults and if they are ALLOWED to distract and no one does anything, like everything else, they will continue and this goes on for years. I teach CCD and prepare First Communicants. You have no idea how hard it is to train, teach and instruct young people how to act in church, let alone in class. They have never been taught by their parents about decorum. Church is not a place for loud noise, talking and playing. Church is the one place where we can truly have peace, reflection, meditation and devotion. It’s being respectful. How beautiful it is to see young people genuflect, pray and pay attention to Mass. I have always approached those parents and thank them for teaching their children well. I also thank the children for being respectful in church and they are blessed. This goes a very long way with them and encourages them to be faithful to church.

        • Romeo Agtarap says:

          Bless your heart…well said.

        • Tamara says:

          As parent of many children I do not believe your “factual” responces was indeed that. I have never felt the community so much as my current church where the crying room is never used. Why segregate off our greatest hope? Pope Francis even encourages breast feeding in the pews. I try to keep my children quiet but they are still children and learning. If you find yourself irritated but a child close to you maybe consider it a lesson in patience and understanding rather then an act of rudeness on the part of the parent who is trying to expose their child to our faith community.

      • anne says:

        Amen….people forget they were not perfect children. They forget the kids to day grow up in a fast paced world of technology that no matter what I do as a parent I can not stop it and mass is not the fast paced environment they are use too. (Not saying it ever should be either)

      • mrs. y says:

        I have a 2 year old and a 8 month old. I have been avoiding going to church because I feel like the kids will be a disturbance. I dont think parents should be made to feel like that. I want to go to church with my whole family and not on my own.

        • Martika says:

          I have 7 year old, a four year old, and an 18 month old too. i avoid going to church with my 18 month old. even when he acts out in the cry room you still get starred at.I try my darnedest to make him mind, so i can still hear whats going on, bu I am complete failure at this. I send my older too with family and my son and I watch the Catholic channel and watch mass on TV. Not the same but i don’t feel as guilty and no one is starring,

      • Where a Mass is a family Mass I kind of expect screaming kids and have largely learned to filter out the sound of Crisp packets. Can’t say I don’t sometimes want to take a firm grip on the parents throats occasionally if the kids are particularly noisy or climbing over the pews etc during the Eucharistic prayers but I love the sound of ‘life’ in a church, our future is these kids and I feel blessed to watch them grow both literally and in the faith as they move from screaming babies to angels accepting their first communion to young adults taking their confirmation, and standing on the Alter leading the psalm. I can always go to a different Mass one that isn’t advertised as a family mass if I feel I need a little more peace sometimes. I have to say this morning I attended a mid week mass and loved the fact that half a dozen little ones had been dragged along by their parents and grandparent, even if it did mean a little more noise than the usual quiet of a mid week mass. Being Blessed with a parish priest who provides a Latin mass regularly including one on Sunday that is very well attended. I know I can always retreat to there if I crave Silence and a larger than average Dose of reverence, It’s beautiful and truly reminds you what it is to ‘worship’ at the foot of the cross,

      • Noel David says:

        I do not know what really is going on here…. Some talk about children crying or making noise during Mass and some are commenting about a person who wants to be a Catholic…. Anyway, I will try to stick to the topic of children crying during Mass…. I will go by Our Lord’s stand – who rebuked his disciples for preventing the children from coming to him…. The Lord has no problem with children running, crying or making some noise… It is we (“saintly” adults) who pretend to be all pious and deciplined and expect the children to be like us i.e. pretenders…. The Lord sees our hearts and not what we pretend to be…. I have three children… I always took my wife and children for Mass where we (Catholics young and old) gather as a FAMILY… To be in this not-so-loving and caring FAMILY (with a majority, includiing the priests – not really giving a hang for me and my family when in trouble or distressed) for an hour or so – I simply cannot leave my little ones out… So, even if I had baby-sitters (which we could never afford) I would take by children with me for Mass…. And being children they would run, talk (even a good number of adults do talk among themselves during Mass) and sing…. My daughter aged two would go “La, la, la…” alongwith with pious choir group and other adult who sang those beautiful hymns with lots of “devotion”…. They sang their way and my daughter sang as a child would…. And the Lord I am sure would be pretty amused with her singing… while our “pious” and snooty adult would stare at her with disdain… I gave a hoot to their staring and let my child sing and never rebuked her…. Earlier on some occasions our eldest son (aged two or so) would go up to the altar where the priests sat walk around and come back…. I never attempted to go and get him back… (for all I know, it was his Father’s House – and I was pretty sure that the Our Father would have no objection to that…. We with our rigid ways are only making a mockery of Our MOST LOVING AND UNDERSTANDING FATHER…..).. And our youngest used to run from one place to another (when my wife and I had to sit separately due to no space for two..)… The pious priest and people may have had problem with that…. Nobody rebuked me for not being strict with my children….. So I let my children be children…. And they grew up that way and they have turned up to be pretenders like us adults once they grew up…
        I hope the moderator does not delete my comment….. Being rigid has never really paid off.,…. Because of that attitude of rigid priests and snooty faithful – a good number of families may have stopped bringing their children along for Mass….
        About 48 years ago, when I was 21, I was serving Mass – and would you believe me, a group of young Catholic boys and girls with two pious nuns and a priest leading them were practicing with loud music on for a play that they were planning to put up…. And this was being done on an open stage which was attached to one side of the church building….. And Mass was going on with neither the Celebrant nor the pious Laity having any objection to it…. Soon before Consecration, I had to give a piece of my mind to the “practicing lot” outside….

    • katiekate says:

      Yeah, you wouldn't want a child to distract you from what's really important… wait… what? Is going to church about you?

      • Not sure it’s about Kids either. It’s not entertainment it’s not a play or a pantomime or a circus it’s an encounter with God, a sacrifice a time to Praise God. Things that interfere with what is really important should be questioned. If your children are making a mockery of the sacrifice it’s time for you to spend some time with them and try to get them to understand what is ok for them to do in Mass and why some things are not ok.
        I don’t subscribe to the idea that kids should be hidden away in a crying room with their parents like second class citizens, but I do expect parents to begin teaching their little ones how to behave in church as early as possible. talking to some of the little ones of 5,6 and 7 before they start their formal preparation for first communion I am often surprised at how little they know about what is happening in the Mass their parents have been bringing them to every week of their entire lives.

    • ya i do not like attending parishes with the crying room…. i miss our one priest that during the Our Father invited all the children up to the alter to pray the Our Father…. as he always pointed out these are the little lambs of God…

  • Paul Croker says:

    go to the nearest Catholic Church and talk to the Priest in charge of that Church. He will guide you throughout the whole experience. Be strong, the road is not easy but you get there.

  • Mary Nichols says:

    when my children were small . i made sure they ate or had a bottle of milk before going to the church, also a clean diaper on. i got comments on how good my baby was through the hour we were there.

  • Cynthia says:

    We have 5 wonderful children 18 yrs to 5yrs. old. Our priest always encouraged children to be in the main church. Now that our children are older, I miss the little and big noises babies make. I enjoy hearing them during Mass. I think it would be easier for parents to calm their child if they themselves did not have added stress from the church community. Children pick up on the emotions of parents.

    • Mr. M says:

      "I think it would be easier for parents to calm their child if they themselves did not have added stress from the church community."-Yep true that…I can almost feel the irritability from the church community in mass when my 2 year old cries,…and believe me she cries pretty loud… :-/

      • Melagrosa1020@gmail.com says:

        And you still bring her to church? Do you really think that she cares? The bible said, church is in your heart or within you, that means you can do your praying at home without you giving your child a hard time.

        • It is your responsibility as a Catholic to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of obligation. Praying at home is very Good and we should all do more of it particularly as a family. My Grandparents did a family Rosary every day at 5pm and Everyone Had to be there. All very good as is spending time in church whether it be the church in your heart or the one where the Tabernacle rests is very good but no substitute for the Holy Mass.

      • Totally agree as someone who has never had to take a very young child to Mass I try hard not to judge, although I do sometimes find myself inordinately frustrated when a parents choice of ‘snack’ is a packet of crisps and they happen to be sitting behind me. I try to see such distractions as a Gift from God who is teaching me to remember Him at other times where the world is much more distracting than the odd noisy child. If that doesn’t work I think of how pleased the Devil would be to make people angry or uncomfortable in Gods presence, and remember to be compassionate and sympathise with the parents instead of judgemental.
        Since taking my teenager to mass I have perhaps gained some insight into your frustration finding myself distracted by the slightest fidget at my side regardless of how quiet she was and demoralised from the lectures I delivered during the journey home. You are always going to be more conscious of the failings of your own kids than the people around you. You can only do your best, God wants you there, your faith requires your attendance.
        Don’t let yourself be denied because of others, and as your kids grow try to explain to them what is happening and why they should behave and trust in God, you will get through this.
        So many families stop attending Church because they can’t handle the feelings of inadequacy because all the other kids are so much better behaved (you see your kids actions not the others)the intention is to return ‘when they are a bit older’ and it’s not so ‘hard’ but its 20, 30 years before ‘perhaps’ you once more hear our Lords call and return, by then your kids are grown and their faith and their Church forms no part of their life and their children aren’t even introduced to God. Three Generations from the decision and your flesh and blood no longer knows God.

        • Emily says:

          Love your response! So true, that’s exactly what the evil one wants, to make the parents feel inadequate and quit coming to Mass, and to get everyone else angry and irritated. I personally wish more e people would help parents out, you know offer to hold a baby so the parent can focus more on the older children, or try and help distract the two year old etc. We all need to get involved more. It has been such a blessing when someone at my church has helped me out with my children in Mass. Sometimes kids and parents need a fresh take on getting children to behave in Mass. Of course always in charity, and a Hail Mary for the parents of the crying baby/child always helps!

        • Ann says:

          God wants all of his children in the house of god, not just the ones that make no noise. If your little ones are not allowed to attend church, what age do you think they should start attending? If you start them as babies they grow in knowing the church as a part of their life. When my middle son was about three years old, I said to him as we were walking in church ( me carrying the baby, holding the middle ones hand and my oldest one altar serving and my husband being in the Navy out to sea) “what’s mommy going to do if we misbehave in church”. My son of about three years old said “take me to the park”. There was a playground outside of church. From that day on I would NOT take my son out of church! I didn’t want him thinking if he was misbehaving in church he got to go out to the Park! I was a kindergarten aid in a catholic school for many years. (while my little ones were attending). I could not believe how many kindergarteners had never been to church! We had to teach these little ones 5 and 6 years old how to act in church. They did not know how they were supposed to act in church. They didn’t even know what church was. Maybe some place my mommy or daddy goes to on some days. Yes our children should attend church from day one! I agree with you Rosemarie. 🙂

  • princy safidy says:

    god bless all of us!

  • Kelly says:

    I always make sure my youngest has eaten and bring silent things to keep her entertained, but let’s be honest: sometimes, no matter how hard we try, little ones are not going to be silent. Jesus takes us as we are: not how we’d like to think we are, or what we aspire to be, but just as we are. I think it such a shame that so many young Catholic families are going to Mass at separate times so that one of the parents can stay home with the “disruptive” children. We, as a church, are a community, and communities include children. They are the future of our faith. If a child is inconsolably wailing, by all means bring them to the back to help calm them down, but please do not let having young children deter you from celebrating the Mass as a family. Like it or not, older parishioners who may now be annoyed were once in the same shoes. There should be no “shame” in the innocence of young children.

  • Kate says:

    In my home parish our pastor has repeatedly told parents to bring their children to Mass. He has explained to all those present that the sound of children is joyous and to be enjoyed. We have a crying room for those who want to avail themselves of it but we, a parish of mostly retirees, welcome young people and families with children in the church with love. We look forward to seeing them each Sunday and enjoy the blessing of the children who have not yet made their first communion at the end of mass. We love them and would miss them if they were not there. I believe any one of the parents would accept help from any one of the many retirees who attend the masses, and, there are a lot of Grannies willing to offer their help. Bring the children, please……

  • Daniel says:

    …well said! Still, the option of a separate mass for children can make a whole lot of difference

    • Regina says:

      Amen to a mass dedicated to families with small children. I have an 11 month old baby that does not cry in church; she talks to the priest during the mass and the priest does not mind but I can feel the looks of the congregation to keep her quiet or leave. Many Catholics with small children move to non denomination churches because they accommodate and welcome little children. Non of the churches in my area have crying rooms.

  • Manny says:

    That's why the other churches here in the Philippines has a cry room for them to prevent such scenarios. They should manage it ethically and not morally for it to have a Win-win result. Good for parents & good result for the celebrant.

  • Joey says:

    My toddler grandson had a habit of clapping and cheering at the conclusion of a song. So it goes without saying that the first time he was brought to Mass, he became vocal and appreciative at the end of each of the hymns sung during the service. By the third or fourth hymn, the Priest was encouraging the entire congregation to clap along with my grandson. That was ten years ago. To this day, this Priest still encourages the congregation to give themselves a round of applause at the end of the last hymn of the Mass.

  • Mike says:

    I think that Jesus nudges the babies in Mass when he is surrounded by our false piety!
    The baby noises prevent us from becoming "comfortably numb".
    God bless

  • Athena says:

    In my time with the military and living abroad, all the parishes I have been a part of have encouraged the families to bring their children to Mass. I had one of my priests say, “Let them sing to the Lord”! I do my best to keep my children quiet; however, there are times when they become inconsolable. In those times we quietly excuse ourselves to the back of the church. We do not have a cry room in our church because it is an old historic church. I have to step out onto the front steps sometimes with him. I have also had to sit a chair in the entrance way and sit there for the entire Mass, but I will never not bring my child to Mass because of other people. Some people tend to forget that it is a sin to miss obligatory Masses. That does not mean just for those that receive the Eucharist. It is a sin for all Catholics to miss Mass, therefore; I would be causing my child to sin by not taking them to Mass. It is a parent’s obligation to take their children to Mass every week! Those that allow themselves to be distracted by a child crying or making noises and then saying that the child should be removed from the congregation are guilty of pride. One should re-evaluate how they feel and where their thoughts are during the Holy Mass as not to sin themselves and become uncharitable. Oh and by the way, I have always kept my children in Mass as much as it was possible. Sometimes it was hard but it has been worth it. I have a 14 year old boy that is very attentive during Mass and a 6 year old that says he wants to become a priest. I think the example has been set for them just fine.

  • I feel that who is more deserving to be in church? the sinner or the pure innocent child who has not committed the first sin. Once we were like the child and now our environment has tested us and very often we fail. I say let the child make their noises, how do we know if God is speaking to them? I feel closer to God when I see baby’s and small children in church, didn’t Jesus say ” let the little children come to me.” Just maybe they see Jesus when they are so small and in church. God Bless all.

  • Tara says:

    I think it is disrespectful to just sit there with your kids and let them fuss and cry during mass. It is a holy time and they are being rude. you need to leave. take your children home and dont bring them back until you have taught them some respect. I did not have you kid so I should not have to suffer. I did not take my son to a catholic church until he was much older and could understand what was being said. this is why people leave the fath when they are adults. all they remember from church was some boring guy talking and they could not do anything but sit still. my son is a Catholic now by choice. he enjoys church now because he understands it and did not take him and make him sit still through something he did not understand

    • Athena says:

      Tara, I’m very sorry to say it but by not taking your son to Mass when he was a child not only were committing a sin by keeping him from attending Mass which is an obligation for all Catholics young and old, but you were setting a poor example. You yourself are rude and selfish for your response.

      • MRBCX says:

        Baptized Catholics are only required to attend Mass on Sunday and Holy Days of Obligation once they have reached the age of reason, by age 7 according to the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

    • You shouldn’t have to leave the entire church just because you have a crying or misbMost churches have cry rooms and have the sermons piped in there so you can hear everything. Same with the bathrooms. I don’t see anything wrong with doing that.

  • joanne says:

    I feel if a parent is unable to control their child they need to either remove the child or go to the cry room. It was very unfair and disruptive to stay and let the child keep crying or acting up disturbing the mass for everyone else . Nothing is worse than going to mass and have kids crying or talking around you. You said that the patents won’t come back if asked to leave so everyone else is to sit there and not be able to hear the service or mass? Really?

    • Deborah says:

      Actually, I know many parents who stopped attending our church because of how the older parishioners treated or talked about their children in the past. They have gotten better over time, but we have very few young people because of it and our church is visibly dying off. It is a shame. Who wants to be where they are not wanted. Instead of embracing these young families into the fold, they called them heathens, inconsiderate and not worthy of their time and attention. Who are the bigger sinners here. As catechists, we are supposed to echo the faith, not jealously guard it with sinful pride from those who are just learning or returning to the faith. I, personally, did not even begin to understand the true meaning of our catholic faith until I returned to the church after my children were born and I was “volunteered” to help out with Sunday School. Over the years my children were the few that were at Mass every Sunday, but I saw way too many leave instead of dealing with the comments.

    • Andrew says:

      Actually, nothing is worse than the self-involved hypocrites who think they somehow have more right to be at Mass than the parents do. Suck it up, it’s people like you who are driving people from the Church.

  • antonio leilua says:

    Love reading all the comments above and the different views from different people on the subject of crying children at church and what to do?
    My wife and me an our 2boys n little girl go church together every sunday, now my kids are every now an then make noise cry loud talk loud drop the kneeling cuhsion run around fight with each other but at the end of the day there kids an kids are doin what there supposed to do.
    Now im every Sunday teaching my kids how to stand kneel sing songs reply pray sit quietly shake hands Respect others during church and that its an hour of the week in which we commit to lord ..
    I agree that its only an hour a week we go church but the hardest hour of my week is in this hour im trying to consentrate on church look after the kids , have silent arguements with my wife about the noise our kids are making , trying to pray without being hassled by any of the kids who think im a jungle gym when im kneeling down,
    also feeling the embarrassment when people turn their heads in our direction everytime they hear something.
    I believe we as a family must go church n grow in the church and we as parents must plant that seed in our children because when our kids grow up they may loose their way some day and some things that will help them find their way will be the childhood memories of us goin to church as a family and when they have family’s of their own they will always find it hard to deal with the noise their children are making in church but im sure they’ll remember their parents doin it tuff when they were kids and appreciate how hard it is to do this .
    I respect my mother n father who took 8kids to church without fail noise and everything but their faith was strong and keeping the family together was most important .
    some of us dont realize this hard work untill we our selves become parents
    I tell you what though I went to church on my own last week and I felt empty and sad that my children weren’t there and my wife due to travelling ,
    and a young family came in to church late and sat next to me and the kids were making alot to noise and funny enough this made me smile and cry at the same time and quietly apologized for the noise her children were making, she looked very stressed so I replied to her dont be silly your kids are beautiful and kids will be kids I should know I used to be one. This mother had a tear in her eye and smiled and seemed stress free for the rest of mass .
    Now im not promoting noise during church is ok but just hard to deal with especially by the parent , now when im at church I see everyone as my family a place where I can pray amongst other catholics , I would hate to see familys pushed away from goin to church to save themselves from embarrassment from others
    if you ever get a chance to speak to a family with children please encourage them rather than discourage them make them feel welcome , love one another always..

    • Melagrosa1020@gmail.com says:

      I do not get it, why go to church and subject yourself with all the difficulties you have mentioned with detailing with your children and wife and having to concentrate praying. Why subject your kids to it, we both know that they really don’t understand it and that is why they are acting up, they do this because they are bored.

      • Emily says:

        I can tell you why, because their are the beautiful moments when your two year old whom you have brought to Mass since their birth starts saying the responses and bowing his head to pray the Our Father even if for just a moment. And you see your five year genuflect to the tabernacle for the first time without being asked. And your older children pray before Mass without being asked. These things won’t happen unless we go through the struggle it can sometimes be to take our children to Mass. Honestly, I am now recalling so many beautiful moments at Mass with 5 my children. And we have our struggles with three boys under 5, but I wouldn’t trade them for anything because they have made me a better Christian, and a better mother. It is worth it to take children to Mass, trust me 🙂 God bless you for this question, you have made my morning with all the wonderful memories of when it was obvious my children were understanding and participating in Mass!

  • Maria says:

    A while back, before we moved, my husband and I, and our four children were part of a parish that had a children’s mass. The priest was very welcoming and he even stated that he loved hearing the children during mass because it meant that the parents were taking their children to mass and raising them in the faith. When a child started to startle and make noise he would assure us not to leave. He would tell us to stay. It was a noisy, accepting, non judgemental, less stressful and an inspiring mass. We as parents try our best to keep the children quiet. It’s very discouraging when we’re given harsh looks and told to sush. Not to mention we have a child with special needs so sometimes it is very difficult for him to stay still and quiet. I miss our old parish. I just pray that more parishes would adapt this kind of thinking.

  • Tess1015 says:

    I have this youngest child of mine who was also not behaving well in church and even at home or at school.I never get tired of bringing him with me every Sunday to attend mass… I remember, when he was big enough to be reminded of good manners, during the last part of the mass where the priest gives the blessing to the church goers, he would get my hand and put it on his head so while the priest gives his blessings, I was also blessing him… , Now at 16, he is the leader in school Youth for Christ, inviting young people to join and have personal relationship with Jesus… he even give prepared talks and share as witness to God’s goodness in our life…

  • Duarte says:

    I don’t like cry rooms. Purposely separating people from the church doesn’t make too much sense to me. My parish priest growing up would sometimes be in the middle of a homily, a baby would start crying and the parent would try to leave. The priest would stop his homily and tell the parent that is was ok that the baby was crying and that it wasn’t reason for them to not be apart of mass. I like that idea. People celebrating mass should be so focused on the mass that the crying doesn’t bother them anyways. Baby’s cry, that’s kind of what they do. It is a little different if it is a kid that is being loud in a sense that the parent should feel a little embarrassed about not being able to keep a kid quiet and respectful. At the same time though, it still should not stop everyone else in church to lose focus on the celebration of mass.

  • Winston Chua says:

    Matthew 19:14 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” This about sums it up.

  • naxin fernandez says:

    every thing take positive think

  • Loraine says:

    The Priest speaks through a microphone… a baby crying in my church doesn’t hinder anything. My old Parish Priest used to chastise people in the congregation who were annoyed by the kids running in the isles and even sitting on the steps of Alter…and people brought their kids to church. Those kids grew up and they are still with the church….some with noisy kids of their own! When I had my own kids I was met with some evil stares in church when my son accidentally moved a kneeler with his foot. What has made us so intolerant and mean in the house of God? Well I did decide to avoid having to deal with the stares and the intolerance and stayed away from Church for nearly 2 years waiting for each child to reach the “appropriate” age…..meanwhile my oldest would be the one who should be there but couldn’t because of his younger siblings. For this reason I went back and this time with 3 kids and a reallllly noisy 2 year old. I am an exception to the rule. Many people don’t go back. I have to carry my children. If I wait till my 2 year old behaves well my 9 year old may be lost from the teachings of my religion. As a teenager my mom was still dragging me to church. Thank God for my mother. My religion is so important to me. I do not want to deny my children this.

  • luvlyjane says:

    in our entire young life only few things we can remember…i cant forget that i found my self infront of the church crying MAMA…is the words comes out in my mouth.an american priest come to me and hold my hand go inside the church…but i crying more out loud and the alter priest while reading the testimony stop and announce whos child is crying looking for mama…why i lost that day that i scared to loss myself far away of my motherside specially in public…why i cant forget this until now?

  • hessmlou says:

    Most Roman Catholic churches have a crying room, where there are comfortable chairs and a one-way speaker system so Mom and Dad can hear Mass without the rest of the church hearing the baby and toddlers. If there is a crying room, parents should use it.
    There are many people in the church who want to and need to hear the entire Mass, including the homily. Be thoughtful. Why should one family ruin Mass for everyone?
    The Consecration of the Mass is not the time for fathers to run up the aisle to retrieve children, or a mother to be shushing young toddlers or singing to infants who aren’t old enough to understand the miracle of transubstantiation. I’ve never seen or heard of a priest stopping the Mass, but I can certainly understand if they did.
    If your parish does not have a crying room, perhaps you can suggest it for capital improvements.
    I find the author’s attempt to tarnish older priests insulting. Perhaps they have more respect for God and the Eucharist than you do.

  • Gary says:

    Some of these bigger Churches have cry rooms and a speaker in the room so that the parents can still follow the mass

  • Most churches have “cry rooms” or even in the hallways you can hear the priest and all.

  • Melagrosa1020@gmail.com says:

    O.k, this is why children under the age of 18 should not be brought in to attend mass, they are just way too young to understand what is it about. I know, you all are probably saying that I am crazy to suggest such a thing, but kids are kids, if you want to go to church then get a baby sitter and if you are church then make sure there is a children’s room with certified child care provider. I do not know about you all, but infant’s way of communicating is by crying, so be a responsible

  • ogar Blessing says:

    Am happy of been one of this great families and may our Lord Jesus Christ be with us all amen

  • Linda B says:


  • Linda B says:


  • If we don’t take our children from a young age to mass they will never learn respect for the celebration. Christ died for them as much as he died for any of us. I make sure i sit at the edge of an pew so i can quietly excuse myself if my little one becomes distracting. I understand the frustration over parents who ignore their children and let them wail and carry on. But to say not to bring children is just foolish and ignorant. This is the Mass not some snooty $200 a plate, 5 star resturant. It is for Everyone! If i were asked to leave my children at home I would find a new parish. But never leave my faith.

  • Antonio says:

    I wouldn’t call you crazy but rather blind and misguided .you missed the whole point i made ..
    Jesus wouldn’t deny children from house of God , we as parents got to help guide the souls of our children in the right direction plant that seed and nurture it , church and prayer are are the main source of protein our souls need .
    Keeping our children’s faith strong by bringing them to church is very important for us our children will do what there parents are doing and leaving them at home every Sunday till there 18 just so they do not distract other people praying is just an excuse and example of how easy it is for Satan to manipulate church goers and strong Catholics especially and slowly steer them into darkness .
    We hold them back from eating the fruit our lord Jesus Christ they will do the same to their children so on and so on an we will slowly loose our children to other faiths and denominations even a life of deep sin.
    i mean we are all sinners but we try and not sin creating a good structure are just the basic fundamentals we install into our children we must not Let Satan get the better of us .
    Please try and understand the importance of this .
    we owe it to our children strengthen their love .

  • Nina says:

    As a senior adult, I admit that I am sometimes distracted by the children. I always remind myself that these children are the future of our Church. That reminder to myself is usually enough to send my irritation away. Jesus and the Church love all the little children.

  • Deborah says:

    As a teacher and catechist I have learned that for children and people of all ages to learn and understand, they have to be able to connect, experience and feel some sort of relevance of the teaching to their own lives. That is how we learn. How does someone overwhelmed with small children just coming back to the church feel when they are not welcomed and accepted? We need to lead by example. Instead of yelling, giving the child and parents dirty looks or debasing a child for walking up to the altar, take them by the hand, show them how to genuflect and look up to the Christ above the altar. Tell them about the Body of Christ and the Tabernacle and how when the candle of the Tabernacle is lit, it means Jesus Christ is in the house. Set the tone with AWE and show them how to act. They won’t understand everything in the beginning, but they’ll understand that the altar is a special place. Kids “get” it. They really do, but they have to be given the chance and the lesson. Let them sing. Let them participate. Teach them the Sign of the Cross when they enter the sanctuary with the holy water in a reverent way. Show them, by example, when to sit, kneel and stand. As they get older, they can understand why. As far as parents and the crying room, it can be a refuge or a curse. It might give the parents and disturbed parishioners respite, but it takes the parents and children out of actively participating in the Mass and those lessons that can be taught to the children are also lost. Once the parent removes themselves from the active Mass, their focus is solely on the children and not the Mass anymore. Both lose. I know from many years of being a catechist and my current place as the makeshift organist behind our little choir, the sound of a child within the congregation always brings a smile to face. It means our church is growing and learning. It also means Peace and the Grace and Innocence only a child can bring to all of us without even realizing it.

  • I have a I know a family when their kids start getting fussy they take their kids out side for a few minutes if it is a nice day or they take them in another part of the church and then when they calm down th I know of a family when their kids get fussy they take their kids outside or to a Nother part of church so it doesn’t disrupt the rest of the parish or the priest ey come back to finish mass but they don’t give their kids a chance to start getting loud to interrupt mastoid the priest

  • Joachim says:

    I like this page,it gives me spiritual nourishment and I now understand my faith.God Bless you.

  • christian says:

    pure and simple… it’s distracting. reprimanding parents or the children (but in a nice way) is a way of educating parents, of training them on raising their children towards good manners and right conduct. nowadays, some parents are not so hands-on when it comes to disciplining their kids, it’s not about spanking them but guiding their kids on what is right because some parents don’t bother unless reprimanded. then when these kids grow up… they know what respect means and what giving regards to others mean.

  • Mary says:

    I used to get upset with crying children being a distraction, until I had my, now 1 year old son. My husband would like us to go to church as a family, but then I find it very hard to concentrate on the mass with my son constantly demanding my attention. I don’t think parents or children should be punished for this. I sit in the back so I can take my son out quietly. When a child is old enough to understand, then yes, any other behavior won’t be tolerated. But if it’s a small baby or child, then that’s different. Some grown adults don’t know how to behave in church.

  • Billy says:

    Think of Christmas night and the Newborn Baby Jesus. That should help. Most church cry rooms need serious help or more of them, like 3-6 of them.

  • e gilligan says:

    Unless, you have a autistic child. You really don’t know! Some children become affected by loud sounds or noises. We use sound suppression head phones, but doesn’t remove all sounds or even child behavioral moods. We do desire our child learning/experiencing our faith bound traditions & beliefs! At Baptism, we pledged to raise children as Practicing Catholics!

  • The Apostles thought that were doing the right thing when they were shushing little children. The Lord was indignant and said (AV Version) “Suffer the little children to come unto me…”
    Although the popular use of the word “suffer” has changed over the years, what a good word it is!
    To nurture children, parents and others, parents especially have to ‘suffer’ a lot. E.g. the recorder and violin practice of children is pretty unbearable, but it is tolerated out of LOVE!!
    To those who don’t want young children brought to Church I ask – where are the parents supposed to leave them? At home? Outside in a pushchair? Or are you telling parents that it’s alright to absent themselves from Mass in order to keep their children away?
    With self-centred me-and-MY-Mass ‘love’ like this from fellow Christians, no wonder congregations in Western Society are declining!

    • Homero says:

      Thank you! When my wife and I have our first child, we were hesitant to attend mass. We were new to city and we were looking for a church to attend.
      We made it our first mass as parents. The priest, as he walked past us, stopped his sermon placed his hand on our baby and said, “think you for all parents with young children. I know it’s an effort and if someone even looks at you ugly, you come to me and I will take care of them.”
      My wife and I looked at each other and knew we found our new family.
      My daughter is now 5. Our 3 year old is doing much better but our 1 year old is the unpredictable one. We try to educate them how to behave during mass and still receive the Word of God.

  • Tara Arneson says:

    Little kids should be left at home with someone, they do not understand the mass yet and can not contain themselves. Other people should not be forced to listen to your child cry and have a fit. You had the child not me. dont make everyone else suffer for your choice. Mass time should be quiet and everyone should show respect. screaming kids are not showing respect. My child went to other churches that had kids church until he was 13 or so, then I took him to a Catholic church where he was baptized. So maybe the parents should try that one instead.

  • Barb says:

    I have found two things to be most effective: one, a parish where our priest placed wooden chairs in a line in the narthex. Children were taught that if they sat quietly in the pew during Mass, they could look at holy books, holy cards, hold children’s rosaries, etc, but if they acted up, they would be brought to the narthex and made to sit in one of those chairs, with no books, no rosaries, no cards… it was amazing how well that worked! Taking a child out of the church when they act up and letting them run around in the narthex is simply rewarding them for bad behavior and giving them an incentive to act up. Having to sit in a wooden chair with nothing to look at or do was a perfect disincentive. The second method was one shared by a woman who found it worked perfectly. If the children behave during Mass, then when Mass is over, the family goes home to enjoy treats and fun time. But if they act up, then they must remain for the next Mass as well. And if they didn’t behave for that one, they’d remain for the next. It only took one Sunday of attending first the 8, then the 9:30 and then the 11:00 Mass for the children to learn to behave properly.

  • Clifford Monte says:

    The family should be at church together . Use a cry room if the church has one. (Our cry room is used by those adults who want an early and quick way to get out.) The church community is the extended family. Adjust your hearing aid if you have one as this can be a problem. In any case we all belong together. Parents can sit where they may get out fast if a disruption occurs. I am 70 yrs. and like to know there are more than the tomb stone shoppers at mass.

  • sheila says:

    Didn’t Jesus say bring the Little Children to me. Jesus didn’t say leave them at home, with family or a babysitter. No he said bring Them to me.

  • Stella francis says:

    Yes.i agree i did mistake same now i m suffering for that , so do as pope says because once they grown they are not listen.

  • Bob says:

    The priest in our parish once made everyone come out of the “cry room” and join everyone else in the church. He said the children are the future of our church and the sound of them was like music to his ears.

  • Monica says:

    You obviously don’t have small children. …I leave my child withstrangers then go to church alone? Which church is this that’s childless? I’d rather I don’t go to that church at all. …

  • corazon carbon says:

    here in qatar we have a room for the kids,we called it Angel’s Room

  • Sonia says:

    We would take my nephew (3) to introduce him to the church and he was getting used to it. We he is very active so we would take books quiet toy and treat for when he got restless it worked very well. He was enjoying going then father made an announcement that we should not bring anything like that to church we felt everybody look at us like he was calling us out. We have not been able to go back cause we have my nephew with us on weekends. We really wanted him to grow up going to church but he would be so distracting if we don’t take stuff for him 🙁

  • shen maria says:

    I appreciate most of this- except for calling crying “bad behavior”. An emotionally dysregulated child is not “badly behaved”- they are just dysregulated! Anyone with a basic understanding of child development and the nervous system understands that a well-regulated, community-supported parent (or any caregiver- maybe it’s the person in the pew behind) who knows how to regulate- not “manage”- a child.

  • Edward Mcphail says:

    Baptism. Give something to cry joyfully about.

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