How much do you work on Sunday? We are commanded to make Sunday a day of rest to honour the Lord, to make it holy and set apart for the praise of God, His work of creation, and His saving actions on behalf of Israel. That means no slave labour, like cleaning toilets, shoveling ditches and getting down on your hands and knees to scrub the kitchen floor until it shines, doesn't it?
Seriously, what do you take it to mean? Do you throw a load of laundry in the washer and dryer on Sunday? Or do you set the day aside for spiritual reading and reserve your servile work for the dinner duties? The Baltimore Catechism tells us that family needs or important social service can legitimately excuse us from the obligation of Sunday rest, but it also says that we have to give everyone a public example of prayer, respect, and joy to defend our traditions as a precious contribution to the spiritual life of society. (I guess that means I can't wash and wax my car on Sunday after all!)
So if Sunday is your only day off and after Mass you get home, look around and think how much housework you can get done between now and dinner time, do you do it? Or are you content to relax with a good book by one of the saints while the laundry crawls its way to the corner and hides there until tomorrow?
I used to think it was fine to spend my Sundays doing one of my favourite hobbies - landscaping and gardening - until a friend pointed out that I was setting a bad example for others who may not understand that I loved pushing a wheelbarrow full of rich topsoil and spending the afternoon arranging rocks and pulling weeds. Of course, I responded to my friend that I loved landscaping and considered it a form of relaxation. But to the casual observer, she pointed out, especially to one who knows I am Catholic, they might think I have no consideration for the Lord's Day by working like that outside in my yard for all to see. Ever since then, I have been careful not to set a bad example for others (of course, sometimes I fail miserably), and I have tried not to do excessive housework on Sunday.
Of course, as I sit and type this, I know that tomorrow I will have a lot of housework to catch up on...