When you go to the movies, without exception you are given a reminder to silence your cellphones. But what about the church worship services...especially this Christmas season when many, who are unfamiliar with church etiquette, will be filling our pews. Therefore how do churches deal with cell phones in church. Guest blogger Maria Rainer addresses that issue:
With the rise of cell phones being used in the United States, one would think that cell phone etiquette would be common knowledge. Increasing incidents of people texting or, worse, answering calls and having entire conversations during church services and events indicate, however, that either it is not common knowledge or that people are flouting it.
What Cell Phones Mean to Us
Cell phones have become, to younger and older generations alike these days, an extension of ourselves, a part of our identities. Turning off a cell phone even during service thus might mean a missed lifetime or social opportunity.
What May Not Work
Some churches have resorted to providing plastic bins at the entrance for all congregants to put their cell phones. Trusting others to take back only their devices and not steal those of others may be too much for most congregants, and prohibiting these devices entirely from church may also encourage lying within church walls. Neither does calling out those text messaging or having private phone conversations during a service work, as it may shatter egos in the process.
What We Can Do
Rather than by force or coercion, churchgoers and pastors alike might encourage one another to mind their greater purpose and the meaning of their very attendance, and at least silence their phones. Posting a large, plain sign at the entrance reading, “Please turn off all cellular devices,” may do the trick.
Or this funny video might do the trick:
Bio: Maria Rainier is a freelance writer and blog junkie. She is currently a resident blogger at First in Education, where recently she's been researching music degrees and blogging about student life. In her spare time, she enjoys square-foot gardening, swimming, and avoiding her laptop.