Archive | February, 2013

I knew my legs would be shaking

9 Feb

I wanted to pick the perfect white dress and I wanted to go alone. I knew I would know it when I saw it, and didn’t want any help. None the less, when you go into a store like that, help is all your going to get, and lots of it. A lady took one look at me and squealed, “I have the perfect gown”! She pulled out a tight fitting , ivory, mermaid shaped gown. I shook my head and told her what I wanted was a tea length in bright white. She looked disappointed. I found the perfect dress, with a sweetheart neckline , fitted waist and big poofy bottom. It looked like it was made for me. I ended up buying two pairs of white shoes. One pair had high heels while the other was lower and way more comfortable. I wasn’t sure how nervous I might be walking down the aisle. Especially since I’d be going to the Basilica of Saint’s Peter and Paul in Center City Philadelphia!
When the big day came, I opted for the lower heels, I was a nervous wreck. I knew my legs would be shaking. My mom and my best friend Julie helped me fluff my dress and pin a simple veil to my head.”J” was already at the front of the church. I couldn’t stop looking at all the beautiful statues and artwork, it was amazing. This was the most incredible church, I never knew there was anything like this. Such a holy place. It was time to walk up. I paced myself and kept my eyes on the feet in front of me, when she reached the fifth pew, I started down the aisle. It was surreal. Confirmandi were coming down every aisle. Cardinal Kroll was there to welcome us all into the church. I was going to be confirmed and receive my first Eucharist. I couldn’t stop shaking. When it was time, I went up and the Cardinal made an indellible mark on my forehead with chrism in the sign of the cross. I received the Holy Spirit, I was marked as one of God’s, finally. The mass was so beautiful, and at communion, we all went up before the rest of the guests to receive the Eucharist. I flashed back to Andy’s pier on Long Beach Island NJ, when I held my sand dollar up to the sun, between my thumbs and index fingers. The Cardinal held the host up in just the same way. He said” The Body of Christ”. I said “Amen” and received our Lord for the first time. Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity.


I the Lord of sea and sky, I have heard my people cry

9 Feb

On Sunday, I sat a little closer this week. I still felt uneasy,like I didn’t belong there.My engagement ring really sparkled in the sunlight coming through the stained glass. I noticed something really cool. On the flat top of my diamond, the Blessed Mothers reflection was coming from the window and was showing up on the flat top of my ring. Note to self, always sit here, and I did. I couldn’t stop staring at Jesus on the cross. I was thinking about the crown of thorns. The torture, the name calling, the pain and humiliation. They really had no idea. It was God himself, that they whipped and scourged, ridiculed, then killed. He knew it was going to happen, and He suffered it. Just a week before, He came into town like a rock star. Everyone had heard of Him. He had quite a reputation, a good one. They heard about the miracles, and the things He was saying about heaven and God. They lined the streets just to see Him. Giant crowds growing faster everyday. They threw their coats down in the street, kind of like rolling out the red carpet for some-one important. They waved palm branches saying Hosana, Hosana in the highest, blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord, Hosana in the highest.I realized that I wasn’t paying attention to the mass, while I daydreamed about Jesus riding into town on a donkey, of all animals! Why not a stallion? I listened to music being played, I was listening to everyone singing a song, the words were making me feel like crying, “Here I am Lord, is it I Lord, I have heard you calling in the night. I will go Lord , if you lead me, I will hold your people in my heart”. Pretty soon,I would get to go up there and receive the Eucharist. It was exciting and frightening at the same time. Would I ever feel worthy? I asked Father Carey what the alter boys were doing with the brass plate on a stick. He called it a patan. He said, you wouldn’t want even a crumb to fall, so they hold the patan right under their mouth.It truly is the body and blood, soul and divinity of Jesus. With a twinkle in his eye, Father Carey told me that if someone tried to receive in their hand, he had instructed the alter boys to just hold the patan over top of their hands so that they had to receive on the tongue. That’s how he wanted me to receive communion, on the tongue. So I nodded and said, “ok”.