What does Amelia want Lyddie to do on the Sabbath in Lyddie?
Amelia wants Lyddie to go to church on the Sabbath.
For Lyddie, being a factory girl involves a lot of change. She is not completely under the thumb of her boss, as she was at the tavern, but she does not have complete freedom of operation either. The factory has many strict rules and expectations for its girls. The company wants to maintain a good reputation.
Lyddie reads the rules and regulations for the boarding house and factory, but she learns there are other expectations. She has to buy a new dress, for one thing, before she can go to the factory. She also learns that the girls are expected to seem virtuous. The factory expects them to attend church.
Lyddie looked up in alarm. Living as far as they had from the village, the Worthens had never even bothered to pay pew rent in the village congregational church. "I-I hadn't thought to go."
Amelia sighed, reminding Lyddie that she was proving a harder case than the older girl had bargained for. "Oh, but you must," she said. (Ch. 8)
The girls tell Lyddie that she is expected to attend church, but she can go to any church she chooses. The company doesn’t care where there go, just that they go. One of the reasons Lyddie does not want to attend is because she would have to pay collections or pew rent. Betsy gives Lyddie some advice on where she can go to church inexpensively.
"They'll probably make you put in an appearance from time to time somewhere. The Methodists don't press girls for pew rent, so if you're short on money, best go there. You have to pay for it in longer sermons, but nonetheless I always recommend the Methodists to new girls with no particular desire to go anywhere." (Ch. 8)
Lyddie is not used to going to church. It has not been a part of her lifestyle while isolated on the farm. She has also never been able to afford it. The church requirement is just another example of how the factory meddles in the girls’ everyday lives. It dictates almost every aspect of their existence.