I grew up in a religious home and remain a moderately devout person. I believe that Sunday is a sacred day, which I prefer to devote to Mass, catching up on reading, and family activities. I’m no monk – Sunday dinner can be a raucous affair and the television is sometimes tuned to football. Still, it’s special time.
I resent the encroachment of my work life onto the Sabbath, which, thanks to my smartphone, has become habitual. There’s always something I have to react or respond to in my e-mail, there’s a constant sense of urgency – even when matters are not actually urgent. Deadlines frequently float into the weekend.
I would like to tell my boss that I have my phone turned off for religious reasons on Sundays, but I worry. What if Bob, my ambitious cubicle mate, is happy to respond to the e-mails that I ignore? What if my boss overhears me talking on Monday about the football score and decides that my religious devotion is a ploy to get out of work? What if my co-workers resent the slack they have to pick up?
What do you think? Can I claim a religious exemption to unnecessary Sunday work?
— Commandment Follower