I thought of about twenty other titles that I could have chosen for this post, but I wanted to maintain my "G" rating. But as you can surmise from the title, I am continuing to be unhappy about our merger. And this was only the first weekend as a new parish.
My girlfriend attended the 5:00 PM mass at the other church. She was sitting in her pew and over heard people behind her commenting that "the cabbage eating Pollocks" were in church. She was totally offended and she isn't even Polish. In addition, she attended a meeting for "Ushers and Greeters" (their ministry name as opposed to ours which was "Hospitality Ministers" - of course the name for the ministry had to be theirs) and during the meeting, a woman from the other parish leaned over to her, put her hand on my friend's arm, and told her that our parish members would get used to doing things "their" (parish) way. Apparently, the merger of two equal parishes is turning into the corporate takeover that the people at my parish anticipated it would be.
Another change that people from my parish must adjust to is that now, Lectors and Eucharistic Ministers must now sign in before mass. Apparently at the other parish, these ministers frequently did not show up when scheduled, so they had to sign in. We never had that problem at my parish - when people were scheduled, they showed up or they got a substitute. If they didn't show up, it was because they threw up on the way to church.
In addition, we now have "Communion Police" - at the other church, people didn't know that you need to consume the Body of Christ before walking back to their seats, a problem we never had, so now "Ushers or Greeters" stand at the end of the communion rail to check and make sure that people have consumed the consecrated host. Again, we must do things their way.
I really dislike these two changes. I feel like I am being treated like a child because members of the other parish were not responsible.
As you can tell, I am not happy with this merger. I plan to speak to the new pastor this week, if he ever gets around to letting me know what the status of CCD is. And if he chooses to ignore me, I will have no problem resigning and changing parishes. I dislike being "pushed out of my parish," but I am certainly not going to remain in a place where I don't feel welcome.