How To Stop Noisy Children From
Ruining Your Sacrament Meeting!
We’ve all been in church when it happens…A two-year-old starts to cry! Don’t they understand what they are doing? They are ruining Sacrament meeting for everyone! Whereas this is a dramatization, it illustrates what we sometimes think when a child starts making noise in church. I am a Young Single Adult or YSA. Because of this, I have mainly been in YSA wards over the past few years. Something that always strikes me, is the utter silence in a YSA ward. We don’t have crying children, to some this would be perfect! But I wish we had crying babies, why? Because I’ve learned how to stop noisy children from ruining sacrament meeting, instead they make it. Here are three ways I have learned to stop children from ruining a sacrament meeting.
But before we continue I’d like to invite you to like my facebook page.
1st. Stop letting other’s children ruin your sacrament meeting.
When I’m getting ready for the sacrament and a little kid starts to cry and scream I used to get annoyed. But one of the YSA I home teach, Ryan Meservey, taught me something profound once. He served his mission in Japan. He told me on his mission crying children used to always ruin the spirit of Sacrament meeting for him, until one day when he heard a child crying and thought, “Christ cried during the atonement.”
With that in his mind, every week as the sacrament started and a child would cry he thought of the agony that Christ suffered through, he thought of the atonement. The crying child was pointing him to Christ! When he told me this story it hit me with such force. I realized I could do better if I would just humble myself and let the children lead me to Christ.
“Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.”
2nd. Stop letting others children ruin their parent’s sacrament meeting.
My brother has two autistic boys, his wife had left the church a few years ago. He kept bringing his boys to church but keeping them both quite was not an easy task. He got so many comments about them that he literally stopped going to church because he felt he was ruining it for others.
This sadly this is not the only example I can share of this happening. Instead of judging parents whose child is crying or loud, let us love them, and their children. After all, I am pretty sure it is more acceptable in Christ’s eyes to be a loud child than an offended adult.
Let us reach out in love and realize it is not the noise level that makes Sacrament sacred but the spiritual level. Shaming and judging might lower the noise level but it will certainly drive out the Spirit! So offer to help the struggling parent, for surely that is what Christ would do.
“Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.” Mark 10:14.
3rd. Stop letting your children ruin your sacrament meeting.
Nothing is more stressful than the expectation to keep children quiet during church. From the looks as your kid cries to the whispers, going to church with loud children can become a nightmare. It is only exasperated when you are a single parent.
Often times, the single mothers in the ward are actually not single, their spouse either has a calling that takes them out of the pews, or they are less active. I can’t tell you how many amazing Sisters I know who singlehandedly bring their entire families to church every Sunday. The Church is built on the backs of these faithful sisters.
Many of these sisters, like my brother, worry that loud or crying children will disturb others. So what? Sure if your child is having a total meltdown it might be best to take him into another room. But remember, the church is as much for you and your children as it is for others. So be respectful, but don’t obsess and worry about your children making noise! Remember you are doing God’s work, never let the comments of another discourage you.
In the days of Jesus Christ, these ideas of keeping children out of sight out of mind also were present. But Christ quickly denounced this false doctrine. His actions are recorded in Luke 18:16-17 which reads.
“16 But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.
17 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein.”
So let us come with our children and invite our neighbors with their children. Loud or quite, crying or happy. Realize that we must have faith like a child to truly come unto Christ. As the Prophet, President Monson taught in April 2005.
“Strive always to retain that childlike faith which can move mountains and bring heaven closer to heart and home.”
Thomas S. Monson