What can I answer to my children when they tell me they do not want to go to Mass because it’s boring?
Very often I meet parents who tell me that when their children reach a certain age, they no longer want to come to Mass, and that these parents can no longer force them because especially if they have already turned 18 years of age.
Although this subject is very extensive to be explained in this small space I want to summarize my answer in four points.
1. Perhaps the fact that they do not want to come to Mass is the result of you, parents, for making Mass optional. That is, if when your children were growing you taught them, with your testimony, that Mass was not that important, or that it could be skipped if there was something else going on. For example, if you skipped Mass to watch a football game, the message you gave them is that football game was more important than going to Mass. And if that was the case, guess what? now, there are more “important things” to do for your children than coming to Mass.
2. Do not force your children to come to the Mass. The relationship with God is a relationship of love. Love is not lived by force. Nobody would like to love someone by force or to be loved by force. I actually do not think it’s possible to love by force. The relationship with God is free and has to come from the heart. The ways of God are very different from ours, and many times He, in his wisdom, has different moments to attract our children to Him. Wait for God's time.
3. If your children think that the Mass is boring, ask them what they are doing so that it is not boring. Do they know the responses? Do they sing? Do they receive communion? Do they participate in any ministry? Mass is boring if you do not have the necessary disposition. That is, if I am predisposed and with the mentality that the Mass will be boring, it will surely be boring, no matter how good the music or the priest's homily is.
4. If you think that Mass is boring surely, unconsciously, it is being compared with some other events, and then you draw conclusions that the Mass is not as "fun" as those other events. Remember that Mass is not a circus or comedy show. It is not about going to Mass to have fun. It's about having an encounter with God. The context and what happens in Mass is unique. It is through what happens there and through our participation that we have that encounter.
Hopefully and this explanation helps a little to respond to their children when they tell them that the Mass is boring.
Fr. Manuel Rosiles, MSpS