Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Pentecost! Mother's Day!

Whether you are a Mom, have a Mom, or have been nurtured by someone special in your life, I wish you a blessed Mother's Day!

[I have to admit to you... I'm a bit freaked out at the moment. We have some pretty strong winds blowing outside and our neighborhood is rather notorious for uprooted trees and dropped limbs during storms. I have been praying for God's protection all over this house, but I'm still freaked out. Y'all are keeping me company here!]

I also want to say Happy Pentecost!

Today at Mass I was struck by several things; first, the beauty of the liturgical year cycle, and the symbols used. You see, I didn't really go over the Feast of Pentecost with my kids this week. Just forgot to mention it. However, as soon as we stepped inside the sanctuary, Sean looked around, gasped, and said, "ooh! It must be Pentecost!"

Now how cool is that? Even at a young age, the colors and symbols... as well as the familiarity with the liturgical year... have sunk in well enough that all he had to do was take a quick look and KNOW that it was Pentecost. I was so thankful.

Secondly, I have taken the suggestion in The How-To Book of the Mass seriously and asked the Lord to give me something -- a word or a phrase -- that I am supposed to hear for that Sunday to mull over. So far, He has given me something every single week (go figure!). The phrase that struck me this morning was a phrase found in the Eucharistic prayer, as the priest prays for those who have died in the peace of Christ, and those "whose faith is known to You alone."

"...whose faith is known to You alone."

I found that so intimate.. and so comforting. There is not a single person who "slips through the cracks." Our Lord KNOWS us all individually. From some obscure peasant living in a remote jungle village 500 years ago to the President -- all are known. Too often I've set myself in judgment over some person who has died... not consciously, necessarily... but nevertheless checking off their eternal fate on my little mental clipboard.

That's just wrong.

My mom always used to tell me to never assume anyone's eternal fate.

"You never know WHAT Judas or Hitler thought in their last seconds here on earth. What if they sincerely repented in that moment?"

I cannot tell you how many times I heard those words out of her mouth, and that lesson really hit home for me this morning. We pray every Sunday for those "whose faith is known to [God] alone." He alone is the judge, and He is merciful.

What a blessing!


Eileen said...

What a beautiful reflection! Thank you for sharing it. I'll have to check out your link on the "How-To" book, it sounds like it might be really worthwhile.

I love what you (and your mom!) have to say about assuming anyone's eternal fate. I've often wondered if purgatory, whatever else it may be, might include having to get used to the idea of spending eternity with folks you thought, or even hoped! you'd never see again (without, of course, thinking through what that might mean for at least one of you!) :)

Happy Mother's Day!

Lisa said...

Happy Mother's Day, Ouis! (Not late, just overlapping into the week... &:o) This IS a wonderful reflection. Isn't God good? He never refuses a request like that, does He? What a great inspiration to ask for!

Ouiz said...

Like I said, that's been my "mull it over" passage for the past two days...

Eileen: the book is a fun, quick read that our Bible study group has enjoyed. Nothing over-the-top, but some good practical ideas in there!

Lisa: I had heard that recommendation -- that is, to ask God to give you something specific to hear during Mass -- from two different sources, so I decided I better get on the ball and do it!

I hope you both had a wonderful Mother's Day as well! Thank you for commenting!

Jennifer F. said...

I have taken the suggestion in The How-To Book of the Mass seriously and asked the Lord to give me something -- a word or a phrase -- that I am supposed to hear for that Sunday to mull over.

Whoa! I love this idea. Thank you for sharing.