I love these moments before Mass begins. I tend to look at my two favorite windows, the one above the Tabernacle and the coronation of Mary. The first one I look at when I pray the culmination of our Lord’s stay with us. When I was in RCIA I always sat next to Mary’s window, maybe it was the color.
That scene makes me feel so peaceful, the suffering is over, and salvation has been assured. Today the Asian fellow with the deep voice is reading. I really have to tell him one day how much I enjoy his voice.
I have heard people say that the Mass is boring, too predictable. I don’t see that, yes things are done in a certain order decided by those far wiser than I. I tend to wonder…what was it like? How did Peter feel when he took the bread? So much like us, vowing loyalty till death..then running at the first confrontation. How many times have I done that? How many stumbles? I feel for Peter when the cock crowed, how hard to face our failures. Did they really understand what was happening? How did the wine taste?
When I receive the host, I try to keep in mind that first time. In a way I’m following in their footsteps. Did they feel unworthy? I hope we all hold in our hearts the priceless gift contained in that little wafer.
The worst heartbreak must have been Mary and John. I can’t imagine having to stand and watch. John must have felt his heartbeat when he leaned against Jesus. Now he watches that heart pour itself out.
And those that jeered and insulted…would I have been one of those? We do tend to resist change, and the breaking of tradition…who knows?
J.M. Talbot’s song…”We are one body” strikes a cord with me. ”We are one body, one body in Christ and we do not stand alone”. I find such comfort in those words. Indeed we stand with all our brothers and sisters through the ages that have come to the Lord’s Table. I have made precious friends at St. Joseph’s. Many of those I stand with may never even know my name, but still we are united in His most Precious blood.
May our Lord’s hand of Peace rest upon you all-
Hermits of St. Giles