Some 3 months ago I first posted this article. It seems to me that civil discourse has grown more “animated” since then. Perhaps we all need to re-read this article.
I have been thinking about manners and the cultural norms of what is considered polite and orderly. The topic has come to the fore of thought as I recall stories and events from Kenya. I found the norms of Kenya very familiar to the ones I knew growing up. I knew many missionaries in Kenya that were surprised that they were thought to be rude – something that was foreign to everything they perceived about themself. But then cross-cultural living often had that effect.
Christmas 2019. I think most pastors and their vicars, if asked, would remember back to the days when attendance at church overflowed the pews, into the aisles, and perhaps out the door. We Catholics, a largely silent and patient bunch, are given to sitting quietly awaiting the start of liturgy. Long ago silent reverence for “God’s house” was drilled into our consciousness and obedience. We would fidget, bu quietly. Remember the expression, “as quiet as a church mouse? They were the noise makers. But even we had our own special stirrings and sounds of life – especially on the solemnities and feast days.