Opinion | Church

Etiquette Isn't for Dummies: How Manners and Ministry Relate

Proper etiquette is less about rigid rules and more about loving others.

Don't tell my husband: As soon as I saw that the new Emily Post's Etiquette (18th ed.) released in October, I thought, I know what I'm getting Rafi for Christmas!

If you know my husband, this will surprise you. Rafi doesn't exactly seem the fussy manner sort, the type who would enjoy this book. He's definitely not a stern Captain Von Trapp at the table, reminding our kids of their place, of their do's and don'ts. And because he's been married to a feminist long enough, he knows better than to pull off any mindless gallantry.

But still, Emily Post has a special place in our relationship. While we initially bonded (and probably fell in love) over our shared love of dogs, my own love for him deepened the day I saw a copy of Emily Post's 14th edition on his bookshelf. I particularly liked the red-tassel gradeschool bookmark that hung across the top of the huge volume.

"You've read that?" I asked.

"A good chunk of it."

His aunt had given it to him for Christmas when he was 14—just after he started ...

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