I have been encouraged (rather strongly, not so much) by my friend Tiffany to engage in this 7 Quick Takes weekly bonanza! As many of you know, this Conversion Diary link up takes place on Fridays which I have reserved for intercessory prayer. I won’t give up the latter, but I can make this work! You’ll see – so let’s get on with it, shall we?
Last night, we all got ready in a huff to go to vigil mass. I came home from work early, raced to make dinner, get the kids ready and then run to the pharmacy to pick up some necessities all in 2 hours before mass. I leave my lights on in the car…racing, racing. It begins to pour, but we have to get to mass. We couldn’t go tomorrow (today really), my husband and I both work outside of the home, we have reservations for our anniversary dinner tonight so, vigil mass it was. We scramble to the car, buckle in and we’re off (and sweating). As we pretend to calmly walk up to the huge doors, we see Monsignor. Good evening Monsignor! Good evening Trinidad’s. We see people walking in the wrong direction! We missed mass. It was a 6PM not 7. I do this kind of thing all the time. More often lately. St. Dymphna, pray for my mental health!
My husband woke me up at 5AM to beg me to stay home. The winds and rains were whirling outside. I am not a morning person. Never have been, never will be. Perhaps this is why I never went the nun route as fascinating, glorious and wonderful as it seems. Morning prayer, before morning? I don’t know. I’d be hard pressed to speak anything at that hour, let alone English. I digress. I am blessed to be able to work from home sometimes, and my husband asked me to. I thought it would be great. I could get to mass (I checked the times), but maybe not the early chilren’s mass. I hear you, “Cristina, the children’s mass is at 9AM, that’s not early!” I don’t sleep well, so early to me is anything before noon. I am up at 7am at least daily (no, not counting weekends!) St. Joseph, pray that I can get a good nights sleep – at some point.
As I drive the boys to school, we pray always. We all take turns reciting prayers. Let’s see if I remember the order from this morning, Our Father, Hail Mary, Guardian Angel, Glory Be, Fatima Prayer, Hail Holy Queen and then our little personal intentions. I prayed with them for safety, to stay on God’s path always and to see Jesus in everyone they meet today. Then we did a spontaneous litany of saints – to which my son, Lexicon ended with St. Therese, one of Mommy’s favorite saints, pray for us!
I decided in a rash dash to go to the children’s mass at 9AM. I decided at 7:40AM while the kids were eating breakfast. I know. I wasn’t the most organized. I put a sweater on, tied up the curls in a ponytail, grabbed my *new* Magnificat and shuttled the kids off to school. As I was driving down the road, pleased that I sacrificed crawling onto my couch after dropping the boys, I realized that I hadn’t put on a “good” sweater. I have tattoos down my right arm to my elbow and all over my back. The sweater was not backless, but short sleeved. I never show my tattoos at mass. Except when I was married. I just sat in a per 45 mins before mass began in the dark and prayed the sorrowful mysteries. My favorite! St. Catherine of Bologna, pray for my tattoo modesty!
Mass and prayer time are always beautiful and very lovely. I enjoy seeing my “family” walk in the doors. I may not know all of their names, but they are my brothers and sisters in Christ. I will know their names in His time. As I make my way toward the end of the pew, who do I see? My Lay Dominican Chapter President, JT! What? I was thrilled. Remember, I was supposed to go to mass last night! I told him how shocked and happy I was to see him and he mentioned that he was one of the founding members of my parish! I didn’t know that. He lives in another town, so seeing him at mass, in “my” home, was great. St. Dominic, pray for us!
As I was walking out of the parish, I saw one of my priests with another Deacon. Fr. Joe and Deacon CC. They are both so sweet. They smile all the time. Fr. J has the most insightful, loving, and peaceful homilies you’ll hear. So I took the opportunity to ask him to bless my St. Therese sacrifice beads and the little rosary I purchased from the Franciscan Sisters T.O.R. Deacon CC said, Cristina, I didn’t know you had tattoos? I know, I know Deacon, I hide them, but I was racing and…it was then that Fr. J grabbed his pant leg from the ankle and lifted it up a little, to reveal a tattoo! It was of a St. Patrick Cross! St. Patrick, pray for us!
I saved this for last, even though it’s not in the right chronological order. As I sat in my pew, praying after receiving the Eucharist, I glanced over to see my son, Lexicon, just take his seat on the other side of the church. I thought, here we go…he’s going to do something that he shouldn’t – it’s happened before, he’s a silly guy – but this time, he kneeled and folded his hands together, put his head down and prayed. He stayed like that for a while. A long time for a 9 year old and I thought to myself, Mary mother of us all, pray for us.
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!