Pews are mostly a Protestant invention. The Protestants emphasized the pastor’s preaching as the most important part of the Liturgy and understood the church to be some sort of ‘school,’ where the ‘…More
Pews are mostly a Protestant invention. The Protestants emphasized the pastor’s preaching as the most important part of the Liturgy and understood the church to be some sort of ‘school,’ where the ‘students’ had to be able to sit to learn the Bible from their pastor. It was also a way to raise money via pew rents.
The more I attend the Traditional Latin Mass (which hopefully will recover its rightful place as the sole ‘Ordinary Form’ of the Roman Rite), the more I am uncomfortable with the pews and the mechanical, sometimes almost nonsensical, ‘novus-ordoish’ sequence of standing-kneeling-sitting-standing-etc. during Mass.
newliturgicalmovement.org

Are Pews in Churches a Problem—and, If So, How Much of a Problem?

This article may be considered a continuation of the one entitled “ Should the Postures of the Laity at the TLM Be Regulated, Legislated,...
Ultraviolet
"...pews are mostly a Protestant invention." -Thus explaining their presence in English Churches in the thirteenth century before Martin Luther was even born. :P The "modern" pew was already present and in existence in the 14th century. The Protestant Reformation didn't even begin until the 16th century, two hundred years later..

"The more I attend the Traditional Latin Mass... the more I am …More
"...pews are mostly a Protestant invention." -Thus explaining their presence in English Churches in the thirteenth century before Martin Luther was even born. :P The "modern" pew was already present and in existence in the 14th century. The Protestant Reformation didn't even begin until the 16th century, two hundred years later..

"The more I attend the Traditional Latin Mass... the more I am uncomfortable with the pews..."

Look out everybody, we've got a neo-Trad who feels the centuries-old Traditional Latin Mass isn't "traditional" enough for him. The Church has been "doin' it wrong" for all these centuries now that some zealous "ex Novus Ordo" just discovered TLM.

Gotta love people like this.

Other lulzy nonsense... partial highlights reel...

"the mechanical, sometimes almost nonsensical, ‘novus-ordoish’ sequence of standing-kneeling-sitting-standing-etc. during Mass."

There is nothing "Novus Ordo-ish" or "mechanical" about the sequence. It is designed to show extra reverence at certain points in the Mass. If the author feels that's "nonsensical", they've just betrayed their own lack of appreciation for the very Mass they claim to be advocating.

"pews make the laity into passive observers"

...and standing while still observing doesn't, amirite?

"pews teach us to want Christian life to be without inconvenience..."

Cherry-picking fallacy. Ludicrous in a religion already filled with "inconvenient" obligations and restrictions.

"pews remove the freedom to engage in devotional acts such as lighting a candle during the liturgy."

Please show at which point during the Traditional Latin Mass, parishioners need to light candles. Good luck with that. If people wish to light candles as part of devotion, they can do so befor or after Mass. Racks for candles are always easily accessible and the rows of pews do not impede them.

"pews make the processions overly regimented;"

Subjective opinion. Hey, if you want a "less regimented Mass", go back to Novus Ordo Land and the God of Surprises. The Mass can change almost every week if that's what the parish "council" feels like doing.

"pews particularly isolate young children from the liturgy."

Funny how sitting down never "particularly isolates" young children when they are watching television, eh?

Children must learn their place in an adult world. They are there to worship God. God is not there to entertain them. If certain Catholic parents feel differently, check the local Novus Ordo parishes for "clown Mass", "puppet Mass" and other novelty "Masses" designed to pander to the limited attention spans of modern children.

Advocates for "vareity" in Mass are the same ones who share the view Traditional Latin Mass is "overly regimented".

"Note the word used in Latin, scamnum (stool, step, bench),"

..and guess what a hard wooden pew is? Duh. Having a "back" doesn't stop it from still being a bench. Witness (drum roll, please) the archetypal park bench.

Aesthetics aside, it's functionally identical to a pew, so much for "notice the word in Latin".

"The key question here is whether or not the postures of the laity should be regimented. Prior to 1969, the postures of the faithful were never officially regulated in the traditional Mass."


...then you've just answered your own question, champ.

Or are you suggesting the introdcution of a "novus ordo-ish" innovation to the Traditional Latin Mass?

"If a person felt sick or tired, he could sit; if someone felt especially fervent in prayer, he could kneel the whole time. "

People still do that in TLM.

It's haunting to see it happen. Middle-aged man, quiet parishioner, and he's down on his knees, head bowed as low as he can, hands tightly folded in supplication to God, shoulders shaking with silent tears.during prayer.

Then you check the intention for the Mass and realize it's for his dead wife.

Nobody bothers people like that. Don't fix what don't need fixing, brah.
Tesa
"To imitate Jesus we must meditate on Him, our model. Meditation is like a mirror, it helps us discover and correct our defects."
LionsOnTheBeach
This topic is very interesting.
Churches as “Protestant lecture halls” reminds me of a priest who calls clerical suits (as opposed to cassacks) “Protestant Halloween costumes.”