“Mom, you sure do spiral. One moment you’re flying high and then one bit of unpleasant news and you spiral down.” She stopped me in my tracks. It’s true. We were excited about creating welcome bags for a family event scheduled in September. But the minute she mentioned a guest sending her regrets because of concerns about coronavirus, I spiraled. “No one will attend. We may as well forget the bags. Maybe we should all stay home.” Laura whipped me back to reality, “Mom, no. We need to make a few adjustments, but a cancellation does not warrant we all stay home.” Spiraling. In my little mind, I go from excitement to dread in moments. I plunge from enthusiasm to devastation in seconds. I plummet from faith to fear in milliseconds.
On a glorious April afternoon, she rounded the corner of the garage with a bounce in her step. Though she didn’t speak, she practically shook with joy as she held out the single flower from the rhododendron bush for all to admire. Her smile, wide and appreciative, exhibited her excitement over this smallest of gifts. At eighty-five years of age, Mom’s heart overflowed with child-like emotion from years of dementia. In this “diminished” state, she often saw what others took for granted. Not only flowers, but cloud formations, birds, and babies. She could often “see” the important realities of life.
One cup of cold water
Satisfies a thirst
Lightens the load
Dispels the loneliness
Affirms one’s worth
Brightens the day
Crosses a boundary
Averts a war
Brings about justice
Changes a heart
One cup of water
Christ to another
Photo by Brandon Kaida on Unsplash
Naming Grace in the Domestic Church reflects on Scripture through the lens of a parent/grandparent. To contact Mary about her reflections or to speak: www.mary pedersen.com
“Don’t worry about it.” Every single time we asked one of our sons what was bothering him, he’d respond: “Don’t worry about it.” As his parents, of course we worried about it—whatever the “it” was. Was “it” failing a class or not making the team? Was “it” struggling with an assignment or a problem with a friend? “Don’t worry about it,” always triggered worry in us. Out of love, we want to know every single detail of our children’s lives—especially their worries. If kept to one’s self, worry grows. If revealed, we could offer a little help, a word of encouragement, or an idea for moving forward.
Pope Francis climbed, step by slow step, to an altar in an eerily empty St. Peter’s Square, reflecting the heaviness of our hearts during this pandemic. As a drizzle fell, the Pope prayed for an end of the coronavirus. He gave the Apostolic Blessing, the Extraordinary Urbi et Orbi, a prayer for the city of Rome and the world, while surrounded by the columns designed to symbolize Christ’s embrace of humanity.
The blog on this page presents reflections on the Sunday readings through the lens of a parent/grandparent, aiding leaders of the domestic church in their vital task as “first heralds” or “first preachers” of the Good News in the home.