Dining Etiquette: To Pray or Not to Pray in a Restaurant

Several years ago I met a man for lunch at Stephan Pyles. It was the first time we’d met. We sat down and ordered. When the food arrived, he grabbed my hand and asked me to join him in prayer over our lunch. I bowed my head but kept my eyes open. Diners all around us were watching us as the very nice man prayed. And prayed. And prayed.

I admit I was extremely uncomfortable. Not because he was religious and blessed his every meal and minute on earth, but, and I don’t know how to put this gently, because I felt he was imposing his beliefs on me. Now don’t go all crazy on me, I am being honest. Looking back at it, I realize it wasn’t that big of a deal. However, I would like to hear what you think about this situation. Should he have asked me if I would have liked to join in prayer or was it “fair” that he grabbed my hand and assumed it was okay?