Sunday, 12 February 2012

Integration Attempt: Attending Mass in a German Community

 Weather says it's about -3° to -7° today. I thought I could also do some minutes of power walking and visit our local church instead of taking the train to the city.  To which church this time, I thought; to the Evangelicals or to the Catholics? Shall I support the small Protestant church this time or see what's new inside the Catholic church? I decided to attend the Catholic mass seeing that the Protestant chapel was not yet lighted while cars were filling up the parking space of the Catholic church.
I learned that they hold extra "Gottesdienst" (divine service) for the small children with their parents in the parish hall while the regular mass is celebrated inside the church. Just imagine a church full of screaming and laughing children when the priest delivers its homily; you could then very well imagine how masses are held in the Philippines or among the Filipino communities abroad or in what they sometimes call now diaspora.
I wonder why Germans don't hold hands while praying the Lord's Prayer? Too uncomfortable gesture of faith for the pious Germans while Pin@ys in their churches give their hands willingly, feeling at home with one another?
In this particular mass, I noticed that I was the only foreigner, I mean non-European as this community is getting over populated with pious migrants coming from Eastern Europe. Surely, the freezing temperature was a big hindrance to keep the Lord's Day holy or my "kababayans" were thinking there would be another mass in this month where the weather would be friendlier, where they would feel more at home, more integrated and more anticipative of the post-mass "Salo-salo" or shared meals among friends and acquaintances. Feast be with you!


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