Priest in Italy holds mass @ an arcade

Shaggy April 23, 2008 1

About a year ago, we reported on a new “MegaChurch” opening up in the US that hoped to attract younger kids to the pews by combining church with video games, including some arcades and of course the obligatory Halo station. Via UPI, I caught this article about a priest in Italy that decided to take his message directly to an arcade in the hopes of attracting some attention there, by setting up mass on location. From the article the priest was quoted as saying:

“At the start, they were all a bit surprised,” he said. “But then they stopped playing and helped to prepare an altar and volunteered to read bits of the Gospel. Everyone paid attention throughout the holy mass.”

”I hit upon this idea thinking about the fact that so many young people are distancing themselves from the church and choosing to hang out together in different ways and in different places, whether they be discos and games arcades, away from parents with whom they don’t feel at ease,” he said.

That certainly would be an unexpected sight to see when you walk in. Of course if it were my job to worry about bringing kids to church I would be trying to figure out why they would be distancing themselves from it (I doubt it’s because there aren’t video games plastered all over the church) and deal with that. But to each his own, I have nothing against churches using activities to bring young people into the pews if it helps but I think that a balance needs to be held to as well.

[Via UPI] [Discuss on the Forum]

One Comment »

  1. SaraAB87 April 24, 2008 at 11:03 pm - Reply

    Perhaps if the masses were a little more engaging then people would bring their kids to church and kids would want to go to church. Here church is a place that you go on a holiday, Easter, Christmas etc and don’t go all year round. Out of the people who go to mass here, how many are actually getting something out of it? I bet very few. Most people sit there like zombies in the church. Its like its a place you feel you have to go, not a place that you want to be. If adults aren’t getting much out of the mass, then I can’t imagine kids getting anything out of it either, especially when the material presented is way beyond the scope of most of the children in the pews. The church is dealing with adults and teens who can’t shut off their cell phone for the duration of the mass and children that are being raised on the Nintendo Wii, so I think they need to find a different, more updated way of presenting the mass in order to engage the public. I have seen kids play the Nintendo DS for the duration of the mass here. For the record I am a catholic and I grew up a catholic and went to catholic school all my life.

    I don’t think using video games to attract kids is the right way to go about this. It doesn’t seem to me like there is much incentive to this, the kids already have video games in their homes, and if they don’t have them in their own house they are playing at a friends house. There isn’t much incentive if the church is trying to lure them in with something they already own.

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