Generally I try and get to church about half-an-hour before Mass.  The last couple of weeks I wasn’t quite so good at my effort.

For all I know all denominations suffer from the gabbers.

In both cases, I looked at the clock and thought I’d get to an earlier service and managed to get in the door just in the nick-of-time.  This isn’t recommended in Roman Catholic circles.  You’re also supposed to arrive early for prayer and meditation.  You’re also supposed to be quiet and listen for the Lord.  This also helps others listening for answers.

For all I know, most Protestant churches have a similar approach.  For all I know, all denominations suffer from the gabbers.  The people who’ve got to knock people down to rush over and greet a newcomer.  Frankly, when I go into a strange church, I’m there for God.  The socializing can take place afterward in the basement, parish hall or Depot Grill.  The gabbers are the worst.  I already know it’s cold.  I just saw you last week and a couple of times in between at the grocery store.  We don’t need to catch up until Mass is over.  Today, I almost did something very un-Christian.  It took some restraint but I wanted to slide into a seat next to some gabbers and suggest we go down to Depot Grill and forget God this Sunday.  You see, then we could let the people really trying to worship concentrate on their efforts.  Instead I offered a prayer for the kibitzers and did my best to tune them out.  Any pastors reading this post can please share any and all advice with me about how best to deal with rude people.  My e-mail address is