Today we celebrate our 8th anniversary of reception into the Roman Catholic Church. Sometimes I wonder when the honeymoon will end but like our marriage, it hasn't yet. We keep falling deeper and deeper in love with Jesus, Mary and Joseph. And I have so many friends up high. A dear friend introduced me to St. Gemma Galgani. Isn't she a beauty? Today is her feast day. And given that Easter is a moveable feast, it's even more special that she died on Easter Vigil. I always ask her to pray for our family. What a perfect saint for our teenagers!
This past Saturday I had a great time at Barnes & Noble. The children were so attentive and we had a good time together after hunting for eggs and coloring traditional pysanky designs. Parents appreciated that the eggs were sealed. I just loved the baby in purple! She was the first to find the eggs. The little boy who's running off is besotted with my friend Sharon Chriscoe's Racecar Dreams. He wanted nothing at all to do with silly eggs. If only eggs hatched trucks :)
Alas, Palm Sunday brought the terrible news from Egypt, the massacre of Coptic Christians during liturgy. Please take a couple of minutes to listen to Bishop Makar. It is heroic to practice your faith in a place where people want to kill you. Yet, as Tertullian said nearly 2,000 years ago, the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church. Christians are being exterminated in the Middle East but their sacrifice is not for naught. Christianity may be declining in the West but the Church is growing in Africa and Asia. Pray for us, O new martyrs, even as we pray for you and your families. And please pray for Pope Francis as he travels to Egypt in a couple of weeks.
We are busy learning music for the Sacred Triduum. These are not Holy Days of obligation but our priest wonders how people transition from Passiontide to Easter without these extra days of devotion. In essence it is one liturgy beginning Maundy Thursday until the Easter Vigil. There is no dismissal when we go to Mass. We leave in silence and return in silence. I could never miss it. When our children were in public school, I'd pull them out for Good Friday. And I just love Maundy Thursday because that is when our Lord instituted the priesthood and without our priests, we wouldn't have our Lord in the Eucharist, and without the Incarnation, we wouldn't have anything at all. We'd still all remain in our sins. And so I leave you with O Magnum Mysterium by Victoria.
O great mystery,
and wonderful sacrament,
that animals should see the new-born Lord,
lying in a manger!
Blessed is the Virgin whose womb
was worthy to bear
Christ the Lord.
A blessed Holy Week to all reading.
I can't believe I'm only now posting this here* because the giveaway ends this weekend, but if you'd like a chance to win a copy of TEE, hop on over to a dream** writer's blog and leave a comment there because Ten Easter Eggs is April's Picture Book of the Month. Many thanks to Sharon Chriscoe for hosting.
*I don't even have a good excuse besides being ill off and on :(
**You'll see why when you check out Sharon's books :)