The prize seat in my childhood church

I grew up in Northern Ireland where eighty per cent of the people attending the little church I attended every Sunday fought for fifty per cent of the pews. Well, they did not fight, but everyone knew their seat, and they were all in the back half of the long narrow church.

Dunseverick Parish Church

The Church I attended growing up in Northern Ireland

The pastor’s wife sat about three rows from the front, and then there was another lady about half way back. Then there were the rest of us. Our row in those days was one row from the back on the right side as you came in. We sat one row in front of my grandfather, who by now had the right of passage to sit on the back row. Every now and again I was able to sit with him on the BACK ROW. Now that was a good Sunday at church!

The pews were wooden, and the cast iron heating pipes for the church ran along the wall. On a cold winter morning, the prize seat was the one against the wall. One would suffer through the service cold rather than move to a wall seat more than half way up the church. We kids would just try to be the first one into the pew on a cold Sunday morning!

Maybe this is where my interest in analyzing church seating was born – from sitting at the back of the church on those damp auld North Antrim coast days by the Giant’s Causeway. What is your church seating practice? Let’s talk! Share the Love…

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