Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Third Time's the Charm

The longer you hang around here, the more you’ll realize I consider myself to be blessed. It’s not that I think I am any more special than anyone else. I just know I’ve had too many close calls and odd happenings in my life and to consider them just coincidences just doesn’t seem right. In fact, I rarely use the word “lucky” anymore because I am not so certain that luck has anything to do with it.

I mentioned that this past week-end, my son, Bryce had his first communion. He was supposed to make it with his class at the end of April but we’ll be long gone before then. I had to make special arrangements to enable him to go through this here in Battle Creek. Thankfully our pastor, Fr. Chuck, is a wonderfully kind man. He truly ministers to the people of the parish and the whole community in general and we are all fortunate to have him.

Anyway, with this move and all, we didn’t have a lot of time to help Bryce prepare for his first communion and left most of it up to his teacher. I did tell him that the cup is deceptively heavy and, PLEASE DON’T DROP IT. (Can you tell I almost did that once?)

Now, I know this doesn’t really follow the standards of writing, but I’d like to take you back in time for a moment. About 33 years ago, I made my first communion in a tiny little parish here in Michigan. It was during the experimental years where I actually had 2 first communions. One was with my family, all alone. It was quiet, with no special attention paid to it. The second one was with the white dresses and we sat close to the altar--flanking it on both sides--with no adults to supervise us.

With the extra first communion, you’d think I was a bit more prepared and would have put more value into this special event. Nope. I didn’t pay attention to anything that was said. I sat up there in full view of my parents and the entire parish and swung my feet back and forth, scuffing up my shiny new white shoes until the sides were almost all black. That’s it. That is all I remember about receiving my first communion.

Okay, back to the present. When mass was over, I asked my son if he felt any different. He simply gave me one of his pensive smirks and then nodded. I just had to press him for more information and finally he told me that he felt “a little more special,” that he felt “blessed.” And I feel blessed to have seen it. Especially since I missed it completely the first two times.

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