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Worship Etiquette

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Nannerdoman:
Please turn your cell phone or pager off.  If there's some reason you might need to receive a call during the service (you're a doctor on call, or your SO stayed home with a sick child), then put it on vibrate and take the call outside.

Please remember that in a house of worship, people often want to be quiet and left alone to pray, meditate, whatever.  Nodding and smiling a greeting is okay, but save most conversations for after the service.

Deity-of-Your-Choice loves your child.  But if said child is making enough noise to interfere with others' worship, please remove him/her or utilize the "cry room".  And please make the effort to teach Child how to behave in a house of worship.

If you're visiting, please get a bulletin or whatever can help you follow the service.  Then relax--most people are friendly, glad you're there, and will give you any help you might need.

Many houses of worship are much more relaxed than they used to be about the way congregants dress.  However, modest clothing is still more appropriate for the activity than attire which may distract other worshippers.

Persons past the toddler stage should not snack during worship.

At the end of the service, it's considerate to the ushers and custodial staff to return worship books to their racks and to take bulletins etc. with you.  Leave your place tidy.

MissRose:
I'd like to add to this....

*Cleavage exposure of any kind is not a good idea.  Neither are holes in your clothes.  Ladies, do not dress like you are going to go clubbing with revealing clothing.  Wearing what is considered business casual dress is fine for most types of religious services.

*Kids and teens do not need to bring any form of electronic devices and/or toys to services once they are around 4 or 5 years old.  They can be distracting to those around you and playing with them instead of at showing some respect for the Deity of choice by paying some attention to the proceedings around you.  Books should not be brought in either (Exceptions like Bibles, hymnals, or missals as examples as needed are okay)

merryns:
If you are attending a place of worship for a faith other than your own, ask a believer and/or do some research about appropriate behaviour and the appropriate degree of participation for a non-believer. Don't get offended at being exluded from parts of the worship or any rules you consider 'silly'. All religions, including your own, have aspects that appear 'silly' to outsiders. Show the appropriate respect, or don't go.

Lisbeth:
If the house of worship you are at is also a tourist attraction, and you are there as a tourist, be respectful of worshippers who are there.  Don't take pictures while a service is in progress, or make audible comments about the place, the religion, or those present, especially in the sanctuary.  It is probably best to visit at an off-hour time.  And if you are not of the faith, your visit there is not the appropriate place or time to make negative opinions about it known.

Many houses of worship may not allow you into the sanctuary if you arrive after a service has started until a natural break occurs in a service, especially on a major holiday or religious occasion.  Respect any requests to remain outside the sanctuary while a service is in progress.

There may be a receiving line after a religious service-participate by respectfully greeting the clergyperson(s) and other honorees.

kherbert05:

--- Quote from: merryns on March 17, 2009, 07:27:48 PM ---If you are attending a place of worship for a faith other than your own, ask a believer and/or do some research about appropriate behaviour and the appropriate degree of participation for a non-believer. Don't get offended at being exluded from parts of the worship or any rules you consider 'silly'. All religions, including your own, have aspects that appear 'silly' to outsiders. Show the appropriate respect, or don't go.

--- End quote ---

The opposite is also true. If you have someone visiting and attending with you who are of a different faith, or different subgroup of your faith do not insist they participate in all aspects of the service. Some times that participation is forbidden by their subgroup.

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