DH and I are in disagreement over an incident at church this morning. A little girl (8 years old), we'll call her "Emily," was took part in an important ceremony in our religion this morning. She's an absolutely beloved kid in the congregation because she has a such a sweet, funny, lively nature. Also, she has a large family comprised of long time, very active members. So a lot of us were really excited to see her take part in this ceremony, particularly my daughter as Emily and Weeblegirl have been good friends since they were in the baby nursery together. Weeblegirl has already been through the ceremony, so she and Emily spent a lot of time discussing it.
The ceremonial portion of the service occurs right after the first hymn, so maybe ten minutes after the service begins. A family of six adults and a newborn baby sat about two rows behind us. (The family is newer to the congregation and in no way related to Emily's family.) The baby fussed a little bit in the first few minutes of the service, but I thought, as the ceremony began, that surely, if the baby started to cry during the baptism they would take the baby out of the sanctuary into the quiet room, where the accompanying adult could watch the service on CCTV until the baby quieted down. The family has been at the church long enough that they know the ceremonies tend to be very quiet, though joyous, occasions, in which the church congregation welcomes a new member into the family.
I'm sure you know what happened next. The minute the ceremony began, the baby started crying. And not weak little kitten cries, I mean full-blast, both-lungs exerted, opera-diva in training SCREAMS that had the people wearing hearing aids wincing and reaching for their volume dials. We kept waiting for the mother or someone among the six people sitting with this baby, to take her outside. But no, the baby just kept wailing. The minister performing the ceremony actually paused and waited a few beats so he could be heard, but when it became clear that the baby wasn't going to be moved, he continued as best he could, speaking up into his microphone. We noticed that the audio crew that runs the PA system turned up the volume of his mic, but we still had a hard time hearing him.
After church, I mentioned to DH that it would have been better if one of our ushers approached the family and asked them to take the baby to the quiet room. DH said that would be unkind and could turn that whole family away from attending the church. I said OK, but what about Emily and her family, who we've all known for years? Shouldn't we be concerned about their feelings, too? I called the baby's family special snowflakes. DH said they weren't, and maybe the mother was just nervous about leaving the baby in the baby nursery. I said that would be fine, she could still go to the quiet room out of consideration to the rest of the congregation - even if there wasn't important ceremony going on. It's polite to take a baby out of a quiet setting when he or she is crying. He says that's not very welcoming.
So what say you?