Memories

Warning: the following post was written selfishly for myself and for posterity. It may consequently contain nothing relevant or interesting to anyone but my close friends and family.

This past weekend was peaceful, happy, and incredibly busy.

Friday night, Jason got off work early and we drove down to Columbia for the diaconate ordination of one of our dear friends, Renaurd. He and Jason have been friends since they were in highschool; they experienced seminary together, and Renaurd now claims the title of best Godfather ever to Will.

On our way down, Will got fidgety so I handed him the paint sample booklets I had from Lowe’s in my purse, out of sheer desperation. (I am a really awful mom when it comes to carrying around things to entertain my child).

Haha I just want to eat those toes.
The ordination was so moving. Part of the ceremony involves the new deacon prostrating on the ground before the altar… an ancient practice of adoration and humility that cannot help but deeply stir those who see it.
(Unfortunately Will was so wound up, this was my view for 50% of the Mass. Jason had the other 50% because he’s such a good dad.)
Another incredibly moving moment was the “Fraternal Kiss”… All the priests (there were so many present from all around the diocese of Charleston) welcome the new deacon one by one, and then he turns and recognizes his parents. Renaurd’s mother was visibly overwhelmed with joyful pride. That was beautiful to see. I caught myself praying that the Lord would call one of my sons one day to serve Him in the priesthood. I can’t imagine what it feels like for a mother to watch her son walk in the footsteps of Christ, to share in His royal priesthood.
I loved meeting so many of Jason’s old friends from seminary – most of them young, happy priests now. I think Jason was so blessed to be able to go to seminary for a few years, not the least for the many good men he was able to become friends with.
The next morning my darling husband let me sleep in while he took care of Will, because I had decided I couldn’t miss out on the baptism of my best friend’s daughter Saturday afternoon – a two hour drive down to Greenville. The new Deacon Renaurd was to baptize little Clara Mae Lasitter, but Jason had to stay home and do his homework – an occurrence which I realize I’ll have to get used to now.

I almost didn’t go to the baptism. It’s a long drive, not twelve hours after our other drive for the ordination, and I knew it was highly likely that Will would be a handful at the Church. (Ohhhh the wisdom of mothers).

But you know, sacraments are one of my favorite things about being Catholic. They are beautiful outward ceremonies designed to show you God’s love and grace in a person’s life.

Had this been a birthday party, I might have passed, simply because if was a busy weekend and I knew my best friend would understand. But it was a sacrament. I remember Will’s baptism was this overwhelmingly beautiful ceremony for me, where it truly hit me for the first time that I am responsible for bringing my child to God. My role as a mother is to lead him to the One who loves him so much more than I ever could.

I wanted to be there as my best friend did the same thing for her first baby… bring her before the Lord.

Sorry to get all Catholic on y’all haha… I know many of my readers don’t come to this blog for a “Come-to-Jesus”. I also know many of you are not Catholic, so its probably difficult to relate to how I experience Christ in the sacraments. My faith is an integral part of who I am, so it’s not something I feel necessary to formally explain or describe most of the time.

But I never want to forget the memories of this weekend – watching one dear friend whom I have known since I was 14 become a Deacon (just one year away from his ordination to the priesthood!), and the next day, seeing that same friend baptize my best friend’s baby. Seeing the joy and humility on Steph’s face was an echo of the look on Renaurd’s Mother’s face the night before. That look of awe that the Lord wants your child to be close to Him, that He has a perfect plan for your child.

The next day, Sunday, was just a day for Jason and I to let all the memories of the past two years sink in. See Tuesday is the date anniversary of our wedding, but this past weekend – the weekend before Memorial Day – was the same one that our wedding fell on two years ago.
That was another sacrament that blew me away by bringing Jason and I so powerfully, so palpably, before the throne of God. When I think back to that ceremony, I don’t think first of my beautiful grecian-style wedding gown; I don’t think first of the glorious music of the full St. Mary’s Choir; I don’t even think first of all the excited faces of our many friends and family who came.

I think of how Jason and I both had tears of joy streaming down our faces the entire ceremony because we each felt the loving presence of our God in a way we never had before.

It was truly unbelievable… A golden moment… And I have never experienced anything like it, before or since. God was so close, I remember thinking that I could feel Him smiling.

(yes, I am crying in this picture lol).
We spent all day Sunday reliving and “do-you-remember”-ing that whole beautiful weekend. I can’t believe it’s been two years, but I also can’t believe its only been two years. It’s already getting hard remembering what my life was like without waking up next to Jason every morning.
I have been so richly and undeservedly blessed. I don’t understand why God has been so generous and good to me, but I do know that I want to be just as generous with Him.

I remember as I knelt up on the altar at my wedding, next to the most wonderful man I had ever known, sensing God’s nearness, I prayed for the grace to always be a good steward of His many gifts to me.

I needed to be reminded of that.

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