Many years ago, a friend told me in jest, when I wondered about missing Church on Sunday, “There are only 48 lessons in the Priesthood manual. Attending anything more than that is brown-nosing.”
Now I’m quite a regular at Church. About the only time I miss my home ward is when I’m out of town, which isn’t all that often. And probably 50% to 75% of the time I’m out of town, I still manage to make LDS meetings. This may mean that I miss 2 or 3 times a year. Is that too much?
Of course at some point missing becomes too much. Two or three times a year may be no big deal. But 10 or 15 times a year, and I know I would be uncomfortable. For me that is too much.
I suppose it is a question not only of maintaining spirituality, but also of participation in a community. Attending Sunday meetings gives us spiritual benefits, it helps us in our daily lives. But it is also for serving others, for helping others. So, it is important that we come to Church.
Still, everyone misses once in a while, and no one is irreplaceable every week. Between illness, travel obligations of one sort or another and vacation, I think most of us aren’t in our home ward every week of the year.
Does this mean we get a bye a couple of weeks a year? I doubt that most Church leaders would suggest this for fear that someone would take it too far, or that one week would turn into two, and four, and so on.
In any case, I’m comfortable with not making Church a couple of weeks each year, if logistics make it too difficult. But even if I did make it to Church all 52 weeks a year, I don’t think it would be “brown-nosing.”