Today is the last Sunday of the Catholic liturgical year, and it is the day we celebrate the feast of the Solemnity of Christ the King.
This morning, my husband and I went to a 7:30 Mass at a church about an hour and ten minutes away from our oldest son's house, where we are staying through Thanksgiving weekend. The reason we didn't go to a later Mass with our son and his family at their local parish church is that my husband had to go directly from Mass to the airport to catch an early flight to NYC, so we had to choose a church near the airport. (Coincidentally, the church we attended this morning, St. Margaret's, is the parish church of my older brother and his family--but there was no way we were going to run into them at the 7:30. I don't think my brother even knew their church had a Mass that early!) Anyway, my husband--who is an airline pilot--had to go to work today, to fly a three-day trip to San Francisco and back. (But lucky me: I get to stay behind and play with my little granddaughters!)
We arrived at the church about fifteen minutes ahead of schedule, and I saw a table set up in the foyer with this lovely 20-inch-tall statue of the Infant of Prague on it. I went up to take a closer look at it, and there, propped up by the feet, was a handwritten note that read: "Free to anyone. Thumb and cross need repair." I don't know if I've ever mentioned this before, but I LOVE to refurbish old religious statues. I have rescued others that were left on the "free" table in the parish hall at our church back home, painstakingly repainting them, and then adding varnish to give them a like-new luster. Nothing pleases me more than to find one of these fixer-uppers and turn it into something beautiful and inspiring to adorn my home. I could hardly believe my luck. I even went up to an older gentleman who was acting as a greeter at the door of the church to make sure that it was really okay for me to take it. "Oh, yes," he said enthusiastically, "and if you could bring it in after you've got it fixed, I'd love to see what you've done with it." I had to inform him that I was a visitor to his parish and probably wouldn't be able to bring the statue back; but he was thrilled that I was taking it nonetheless.
I'm hoping to mold a new thumb for this statue of the Child Jesus out of plaster or air-drying clay, then touch up the paint job and add a cross to the top of the globe. I also plan to sew Him a red robe trimmed with lace and find a small golden crown to glue on His head. When I finish the job, I'll post an "after" picture.
Have a blessed and holy day, on this Sunday dedicated to Our dear Lord, Our Savior, Christ the King!