Thursday, 9 November 2017



Pope Francis on Wednesday chastised priests and bishops who take pictures with their smartphones during Masses, saying they should focus on God instead.

"The priest says 'lift up your hearts'. He does not say, 'lift up your mobile phones to take pictures,'" Francis told tens of thousands of people at his weekly audience in St. Peter's Square, referring to a communion prayer in the Roman Catholic Mass.
In his improvised remarks, he called using smartphones during Mass "a very ugly thing," adding:

"It makes me very sad when I celebrate (Mass) here in the piazza or in the basilica and I see so many phones held up. Not only by the faithful, but also by some priests and even bishops!
"The Mass is not a show ... so remember, no phones!" he said, prompting laughter and applause from the crowd.

Francis, the leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics, has regularly urged the faithful to be more spiritual and his priests and bishops to be more humble.


Pope Francis is so right when it comes to mobile phones.

Imagine how disrespectful it is for priests and bishops to be taking pictures on their mobile phones while they are concelebrating Mass with the Pope!

They are behaving like teenage girls attending a rock concert of their rock band hero!

You would have thought that priests and bishops might know better?

But then we are used to seeing bishops and priests misbehaving in more serious matters than the use of mobile phones.


There are so many places and situations where mobile phones are misused.

I recently went to a French Belfast restaurant to meet somebody for a meal and a talk.

The first thing my companion did when we were seated was to ask the French manager: "What is the password for your WI-FI"?

I was delighted when the French manager replied: "This is an authentic French restaurant, Sir. We have too much respect for our food and ambiance to encourage our diners to talk on their mobiles".

Don't get me wrong. I am a great believer in the mobile telephone and the ways in which it has transformed life for the good. 

But all things in moderation surely?

Is it not an insult to your fellow diners to spend a lot of your time on a mobile during a meal?

Is it not even more disrespectful to be on a mobile during Mass - especially if you are a celebrant concelebrant.

Just as the TV has eaten into social conversation in the living room - so has the mobile phone further eaten into social interaction.

In the past, I used to look forward to longer bus and train journeys and the opportunity they gave to get chatting to new people and to interesting conversations.

Nowadays on a bus or train you are surrounded by almost everyone wearing wired or wireless earphones looking into space.

It's like living in a world of semi-robots!



  2. A few years ago, I used regularly to give a lift to a guy. Virtually always, as he sat in the front passenger seat, he would text his mates while ignoring me for the greater part of the journey. I got so fed up with his boorishness that I eventually told him, bluntly, to put off texting until ge was out of my car, otherwise I might start ignoring him when he was looking for a lift.

    My threat (and it was a real one) revolutionised his behaviour.

    If it is self-indulgence that leads people to be so discourteous, it is often self-interest that rushes them to their senses.

    1. The world would be a better place if some people refrained from using information technology.

    2. Yes, 12:42, I agree with you.

      Here! Hold on a moment! Did you mean li'l' ol' me?😆

    3. Magna, 17.34. The world doesn't revolve around you. Why are you always looking for attention? Fool. And yes, maybe 12.42 meant observation for you. But......keep degrading yourself.

  3. I AGREE! AGREE! AGREE! with every word you say here Pat.
    So true...!
    I travelled nearly one hundred miles to see a family of relatives of mixed ages recently. I wasn't two minutes in the room when everybody (except one) was soon settled back with or without ear devices, on their various electronic devices.People don't even seem to aware of their own rudeness anymore.

    1. @ poster 23.44
      I feel sympathy for you.
      Those people were very thoughtless and didn't appreciate the effort you made to travel and spend time with them. Not a nice reception.

  4. Suppose there is a time and a place for everything.
    Liked Eamon Mallie saying he tweeted during religious ceremonies....on midday radio.
    Wonder if he were to tweet from the oratory ????
    Don’t know why people are so in awe of the pope when they go to Rome.
    No accounting for goings on theses days.

  5. Fr Z has posted an article about a recent meeting of Irish Catholic priests who, amongst other things, were admonished not to slander their bishops by a retired abbot. Fr Z has offered typical commentary in red ink to help the Irish clergy repair their church.

  6. So much loneliness, depression, anxiety and restlessness in our lives despite having the most up to date technoligical gadgets. Therein lies the prproblem. We have taken the easy way out - now we text in shorthand to one another, sometimes from the same room. The art of real communication and conversation is lost. We live as disconnected people in a world with ipads, ipods, mobile phones, tablets, in every room. We are addicted to "things" rather than people. There is nothing more disconcerting to be in the middle of sharing sonething important than to have that moment interrupted by mobile phones. It can be difficult to re-engage in meaningful conversation because of a dependency on gadgets. I often demand with some friends that we "switch off" to "switch on" .... It works sometimes but otherwise I will only talk "rubbish"..The art of communication demands that we acknowledge the presence of the other person. Conversation without phone gadgets is essential for deepening our relationships.

    1. As I live alone and don't drive and any relatives are a day's travel away, being able to receive even a one-line text helps alleviate the loneliness for a few minutes. I always reply instantly to let them know I am still alive. But texting at Mass is definitely not on!

  7. Agree about the phones. Time and place for everything

  8. Did they never hear of iPlayer.
    Surely all these talks or most are on utube or can be downloaded.
    To think we ain’t allowed mobile pics during confirmation etc.
    Some holy bishops there , pat..Do u know who those 2 are ?

    1. Surely the right time for the photos etc is just after the ceremony finishes. That way, you give the children and others in the church good example and get your priorities right.

  9. Just because a man has a ring on his finger and a pink skull cap on he thinks the world adores him....fa4 too much dressing up these days.

  10. I live alone too as do a big percentage of our population.
    Let me tell can be lonely in a crowd.
    My husband died a few years ago, I’ve never feel lonely, now if I was disabled, I don’t know how I wd feel.
    I’m really happy living this new life even though I was really happy livingfor over 50 years with my husband .
    I have iPad and iPhone plus my car, loads of grandchildren who could drain my pension in an instant....which I mostly to avoid.
    But to see thos pink caps using their phones to take a picture/ video of the pope makes me feel ill.they prob preaching pious nothings too.
    I think if I went to Rome I wd def lose any faith I may have.Lourdes was certainly an eye opener when the drink flowed.
    Did you look closely at any pic of a bishop posing for a picture,he holds his right hand over his heart in case you miss his and lol

    1. 15.02. Granny, don't be so grumpy about the Bishops and the Pope and what they wear....stsy inder the duvet and watch the Flinstones....that's the way you'd like us all to're on your own. If visiting Rome would make you lose your faith, your faith can't be too strong.

    2. No my faith isn’t too strong where clergy are being discussed.
      Don’t you think by calling me is being sexist? ?
      I’ve lived long enough among the likes of coyle, Mc camley , Brady.
      I’m certainly not grumpy, far from it, and I’m out walking every morning around 8, admiring the god given landscapes.
      never watched the flintstones, I worked long hours for almost 40 years, couldn’t hardly name a soap.
      Jesus didn’t wear flowing pink or rings

      Grow up.

    3. Ps 18.19
      I think the pope is wonderful, but I would video him somewhere other that during a ceremony
      Time and place for everything.

    4. 19.18: I think you must have watched the flinstones! At your age! Leave Pope Francis alone. Stop grumbling.

    5. At 18:19
      The most obvious flaws with your post include bad manners, ageism, sexism and a patronising tone.

      What’s a bit more subtle is its author’s unwillingness or inability, more likely, both, to address the points in the post to which you are reacting.

      Wisdom doesn’t arrive before age does. And sometimes it doesn’t arrive after it either.

    6. Pat the post at 18 .19 is offensive to the grandmother who posted at 15 .02
      Please removed it.

  11. Agree absolutely with comment @23:44 above: "they don't realise how rude they are ."
    My pet phone hate, apart from drivers on phones, are the ones unloading, packing and paying in supermarket queue, all the while with phone glued to the ear, and most of their conversation is inane trivia. "Where are you: I'm in ASDA........!"

    1. I agree with you MMM and with poster @23.44
      I recently had a pre-planned coffee with a friend whom I hadn't seen for several months. Once the initial greetings were over and we had sat down, she got on with more interesting things like checking and replying to her texts with the odd grunt in my direction though she barely raised her eyes to look across the table. Then she took an actual phone call! Afterwards I went home to have a cup of tea and a chat with the dog who spreads himself across the sofa. He was happy to see me!

  12. 19.78
    Now you on news
    Getting very popular today Pat
    Good for you

  13. Why is the St Michael's Trust of Enniskillen (all priests I understand) so hesitant to support having a memorial to 12 innocent civilian victims of The Troubles on their land?.

    1. Because it would set a precedent that so long as a group of people obtained "planning permission" from the authorities they could then go ahead and build a memorial or monument on your land with your own permission! Other monuments might not be so "innocent" and approved of in certain other parts of N Ireland and indeed further afield. There are deeper issues here than meets the eye. When the permission for the Enniskillen memorial was first given it was for a slightly different location but they said it might partly block the pavement. Then it appeared on St Michael's Trustees property.

    2. Because being allowed to build a monument on somebody else's property without their permission is not necessarily always going to be an acceptable and welcome thing with regard to other memorial plaques etc in the future in other situations--even if you get planning permission from a purely architectural point of view. Once you set a precedent..... and the next construction mightn't be so "innocent" and there are many controversial figureheads who have died at various levels. If you own a piece of land, you might not want anyone to get permission to build on it. Of course, other neighbours etc might be hoping that you said yes if they supported the" cause....

  14. 8 .44
    I would never demand anything of anyone.
    But yes I would encourage younger people against using their phone when visiting relatives and stuff.
    I would be tolerant of my friends, think we all know when and how to behave when in each other’s company.

  15. Love your photo on twitter , Pat.
    Good to see you happy and smiling.