I must admit, sad to say, that sometimes my heart sinks when I think about going to Mass. It’s not the actual Mass. I love the Mass. It’s all the physical details, the actual getting to the church, which is the problem.
 And so when The Assumption, a Holy Day of Obligation, rolled round yesterday, I wasn’t  thinking (as I should), “Thank you for this solemnity. Thank you for the Blessed Virgin Mary. I am glad we have the opportunity to go to Mass today and honour her.”
No, instead I was thinking: "We have to attend Mass. Where can we go? (Our parish priest is away on holiday.) Should we drive out to the monastery? (It’s quite a long drive.) Is there petrol in the van?  We won’t get much else done by the time we drive to Mass and return."
All I could see were the difficulties. (I know the difficulties were tiny.)
But God is so good and blessed me yesterday, despite my failure to rush to Mass with love and desire.
I discovered the following post on the Internet today:

Cold Knees, Warm Hearts
It was the feast of the Assumption. We scrambled out of the car in our thick winter coats. The sun shone down, warming us up so that the coats didn't seem necessary. But we knew better. As we stepped into the church, the temperature dropped several degrees, despite the gas heaters trying valiantly to heat the enormous space.

We knelt down on the hard, wooden kneelers. Shifting and wriggling I tried to find the most comfortable way of kneeling on those kneelers. But there didn't seem to be a way to position my knees so that they didn't become sore.

A bell rang three times. The organ started to play the first hymn. We sprang to our feet, hymn books in hands. The three priests and the altar servers processed out. The gold and blue vestments caught the light. A general feeling of specialness came over me.

Mass seemed to be over far too quickly, despite being an hour long. As the last of the shining vestments disappeared through the door, it seemed that this special celebration was over. But then the priest reappeared and prepared for benediction.

At once we were back on our knees. I didn't feel the hardness of the kneelers as we prayed the rosary. I didn't feel the cold as we sang the Latin benediction parts from memory. I was lost in the beauty of the occasion.

The organ rang out again, heralding the very last hymn. A smile lit up my face. This hymn made me feel five again, back in a catechism class piping away, "Ave, ave, ave Maria."

Then it really was over. We shuffled outside into the warm midday air. I smiled, thankful for the opportunity to come to this beautiful mass. Despite the cold, the hardness of the kneelers, and all, it had proved to be the most beautiful mass for Mary I had ever been to.

Who was the author? My daughter, Imogen.

Thank you, God for the opportunity to honour your mother at Mass yesterday by celebrating her Assumption.

Thank you for the beautiful Mass and Benediction.

Thank you for blessing us all despite my less than generous soul.

And thank you for a daughter who warmed my heart today and reminded me that it doesn’t matter how many difficulties have to be overcome, the Mass is worth it. It is a priceless treasure.

Please share Imogen's posts at Dancing with Dragonflies. Even though I am her mother and biased, I think she is turning into a delightful writer!

Post a Comment

  1. It is a beautiful feast day, isn't it? The hard kneelers and Benediction sound very uplifting. Our Mass here was a school day Mass and the only seats were in the cry-room with some of the other regulars, but, still, it was beautiful. The whole day seemed blessed and we bought some lovely, deep blue flowers for Our Lady, on the way home.

    I'm glad you enjoyed your Mass:)

  2. Oh - So cool that you had the opportunity to see things through your daughter's eyes. What a deeply spiritual and beautifully inspiring post. Please pass my comment on to Imogen. You must be bursting with pride!

  3. Vicky, I am glad you had a blessed day too. Blue flowers? What a beautiful idea. We had a white cake for purity covered by a blue mantle of icing. Next year, we shall remember flowers! God bless.

  4. Hi Dana,
    I was so uplifted by reading Imogen's post. She didn't tell me she wrote it. I found it by checking my readers' list, and then I felt so warm and joyful. I borrowed it without telling her, and she has just come in with a big smile on her face, after discovering it within my own post. Your comment has increased the size of her smile. Thank you!

  5. Sue, We must have written these posts at the same time.
    I am pleased you Day was so uplifting.

  6. Leanne, we often write about the same thing on the same day! Good to share. God bless.


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