In the Orlando temple, at least in the late 90’s, there was a professional sign hanging in the cafeteria. Loudly it pronounced:
Every time I saw it, I imagined all the cafeteria workers, at the crack of dawn, circling the industrial-sized stew pot, hand in hand, blessing the chicken a la king to nourish and strengthen our bodies and do us the good that we need. But I assumed it was to prevent the problems that occur when one group in a crowded cafeteria launches into a sacred moment.
Last month, I attended the temple with three other women from the area I’m moving to. We met, first, for lunch in the Timpanogos Temple cafeteria. As we sat down to eat, I could tell that one was waiting for us all to be seated for the blessing. I squirmed. And then our little table of four was seated, we had a blessing on the food.
When I was a kid, my mom used to ask us each to silently say a blessing when we were at a restaurant. I’ve gone a step further and simply forgo the prayer altogether whenever we are in public. Personally, I think it makes others uncomfortable (should they all stop talking in order to show respect?) and it makes something of a spectacle. We always say blessings at home and with other groups of members, but I assume that in public, God knows our hearts.
What do you think? Does your family pray in public?