It has never happened to me (DG) but it's an issue that gives me nightmares just fantasising about hearing that familiar ring tone on sacred ground.
Recently, at the SSPX Chapel in Bristol, just as the priest was about to commence his sermon, the ringtones rang out.
The congregation went into spasm, there was a brief second where all thought that, it was their mobile that was polluting the air and then....an almost audible sigh of relief as they collectively realised that it was not their phone....and then, the furtive (and not so furtive) glances around to see the offending culprit.
It was a young woman, identified because she was the only one in church frantically throwing the contents of her rather large handbag onto the floor.
And then....horror! It rang again.
The priest paused mid flow and with a gentle and patient smile, waited.
|What every Catholic woman wants - a bag organiser|
complete with mobile phone pocket
Just as he recommenced so the phone range for a third time. By now the young woman was a whirlwind of arms and objects as she flung them out of her bag.
Silence. The priest began again only for the phone to ring yet again; why do women carry the contents of several wardrobes in their handbags? One of life's major questions.
By now, foam was appearing at the woman's mouth and her eyes were rolling in her head. It gave a final defiant ring before she triumphantly grasped it and strangled the life out of it.
Now I am not a saintly person (no, really, despite what you may think) but I felt nothing but pity for that young woman.
She suffered intensely for perhaps forty or fifty seconds that must have appeared to her (and to the priest) like forty or fifty minutes.
The degree of her suffering was great and went some way towards reparation for forgetting to turn her mobile off.
There should really be a prayer of forgiveness for those that transgress and leave their phones switched on in church.
I am considering putting that priest's cause forward for canonisation.