A Guide For Newcomers
Our Lady of Dover
- HAS a special seating area near the Altar, the small person's Grandstand, for a good view.
- HAS toilets in the Sacristy.
- HAS a sound-proof room very near to the front (entrance by the Lady Altar).
- HAS a porch which is effectively sound-proofed.
- HAS a carpet so youngsters can sit on the floor, and walk around without disturbing anyone.
- HAS pictures and crayons leaflets and books to help children concentrate.
- HAS a priest who doesn't even notice.
- HAS parishioners who sympathise.
- HAS a sound system which is more powerful than your child's lungs (this takes some believing we know).
- DO bring their colouring books, etc.
- DO sit with the youngsters near the front.
- DO remember that the Priest likes to catch the children’s attention, and wave at them.
- DO feel free to go with the children at any time: eg: take them to the toilet, special quiet room, gather them up, (but gently ! ie: let them see you coming) or just walk up and down at the back with them.
- DO take them out if they are really upset.
- DO take their shoes off, if they intend to run up and down the bench, but try to dissuade them from this if possible.
- DO try to anticipate the special periods of the Mass and encourage the children to join in; eg: Gloria, Holy Consecration, Great Amen, Our Father, Silent Prayer during the Great Prayer of Thanksgiving, and after Communion.
- DO encourage them to join in, in appropriate ways; eg: singing (even in different words, such as Baa Baa black sheep, etc), waving at the Priest’s arrival and departure, and at the acclamations, shaking hands at the sign of peace, the childrens Liturgical reading, colouring in their picture, imitating the actions of the Priest.
- DO encourage them to come with you to Communion and collect their sheet at the end.
- DO remember Nanny Smith’s advice: ie: train your child in private, not in public; (eg: teaching him/her to say thank you).
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