I’m not sure we’ve ever cut it that close for making it to Mass on time.
This weekend, we traveled north to Scott’s hometown to spend Christmas with his mom, brother and family. It was a quick 24-hour trip (more details later), but we really enjoyed our time there. Scott, Will and I were all scheduled to serve at Mass last night, so we knew we needed to get on the road because hellooooo Dallas/Ft. Worth traffic. We were right. I-35 was a parking lot. We skated in town just early enough to change clothes and jump right back in the van.
When we arrived, the lead altar server (MC or Master of Ceremonies) asked Will if he wanted to MC. “Um, okay?” was his reply. Our seminarian and I encouraged him to jump in, that there was no time like the present. A few weeks ago he was asked to attend MC training, a big honor, and he did beautifully. He’s my kid who really loves liturgy and he just looks so confident up on the altar.
You know, the kind of confident that makes a momma proud.
As we watched him prepare the altar, I actually had to look away because I could feel the tear building up in the corner of my eye. My gosh he was nervous, but the kind of nervous that only a mom can spot. I feared that if he caught my eye he would see how nervous I was! Our priest was so patient and kind with him, as he pointed out the tabs in the book to turn, where to stand and when to come forward to assist. It was touching, really, to see a priest take such pride in leading a young man and to see a young man take such pride in serving God.
That is my wish for every altar server and every priest: that they may both grow in faith because of one another.
Afterward, our priest pulled me aside and complimented Will. I am so grateful to have a priest that takes the liturgy so seriously and fully embraces his role as lead teacher of our servers. That is how we form holy men, ones who become great fathers, awesome deacons and amazing priests.
Speaking of amazing priests, Fr. Danny’s homily was the kind that caused me to say this to him after Mass: “Fr. Danny, you have to let us know when your homilies are going to be that awesome so they can be recorded and replayed every morning!” And that was no lie. As we reflected on Joseph’s hesitant yes, Fr. Danny reminded us how we have life planned out and then the plans get changed.
The child you prayed for isn’t born the healthy way you envisioned. Your marriage fails. The holiday flight gets cancelled. Dinner gets burned. Our plans change, but it isn’t the change we should worry about, rather it is our attitude toward them.
As a planner I’m certain this homily was written just for me and the millions of people who thrive on plans. I do get bent out of shape when things don’t go my way. How different would history have been if Joseph had said no, had pouted and walked away? I’m SO not doing this homily justice, but I can tell you that sometimes you know why you’re meant to be at Mass. Last night was our “meant to be.” What a blessed way to spend the fourth Sunday of Advent.
Make these last few days count, let the little stuff go and get ready for the party. A magnificent birth is on the horizon!
*as a sidenote, we never let the boy escape without belts except when they altar serve!
Thanks to the sweet gals at FLAP for hosting. I haven’t visited in a while!