Fish Service

The other day while at the local grocer, I went up to the seafood counter to see if they ever stock bass or trout. I asked the seafood specialist and he gave me a blank stare and replied, “I don’t know,” and then continued to stare at me. No, “I’ll go check, just one moment,” or, “You know, I’m not sure, let me find out.” Just the final answer of, “I don’t know.”

Whatever happened to good customer service? Sure, the store and the specialist were offering me so called “assistance” by being there, but assistance with what, giving me an answer I could have figured out on my own. The reason I write this is not to complain about how customer service in many corporations has gone out the window, but to point out a duty all of us have as Catholic Christians.

When someone walks into your parish or approaches you about your faith, what type of Christian “customer service” are they getting? Are their questions answered correctly? Do they feel like they are getting good solid answers? Do they feel invited and welcomed? Are they getting the good old service with a smile? The way we talk about our faith and “market it” to others is key to the salvation of souls. Are you inviting them to meet Jesus and the Church that He founded?

Prologue I in the Catechism of the Catholic Church states that as Catholic Christians we are called to know and love God. If we truly love God, then we are going to desire knowing everything about Him.

In order to help our Church grow by bringing the good news of Jesus Christ to others, it is key that we know our faith, love our faith and offer good “customer service” to others who are interested in our faith and parish. So if you struggle with understanding your Catholic Christian faith, then don’t be afraid to pick up some books, listen to Catholic radio and/or ask some questions so that we can continue to offer good quality service to others just as we have done for over 2000 years.

“Seek not to understand that you may believe, but believe that you may understand.”— St. Augustine

-Michael Walsh


3 responses to “Fish Service

  1. Excellent piece! Our protestant brothers and sisters, to their great credit, have perfected “service with a smile,” even if they don’t have the Sacramental “inventory” we do. Think about the positive impact we could make if only we said hello to people or smiled at them after Mass instead of rushing out at halfway through the recessional hymn… this is a great challenge to us to step up the hospitality.

  2. Michael,
    Thanks for the wake-up call!
    I wonder what would happen if we attempted to strike up a conversation after mass with one new person (or entire family!) every week?

  3. Wow, I really liked this! A few years ago, my husband and I went to Mass at a primarily African-American church in New Orleans. It was located in a very rough neighborhood, with crack vials having to be swept from the church steps every morning, we were told.
    Other than the priest, I think we were the only non-black worshippers. As soon as we’d arrived in our pew, people began coming over to us to say hello and welcome. Yeah, we stood out as non-regulars, I guess!
    The Mass lasted for two hours, and it sped by for us; great music, great homily, an amazing feeling of being part of one big family. At the end, the people sitting next to us invited us back to their home for coffee after Mass!
    If I could somehow make my way 1,000 miles to this Edmundite parish every Sunday for Mass, I would. I can only imagine the looks on my fellow parishioners’ faces here in Cincinnati if we suggested behaving in as welcoming a fashion to newcomers. And isn’t that a shame?

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