If merely being the mother of five boys was all it took, I would be golden. But I'm quite sure that there is a lot more to achieving sainthood than that.
My mother-in-law, who died on Holy Saturday in 2009, was born on All Saints Day in 1931. And how fitting indeed, because I believe she is a saint. She would have been 82 today, and she is sorely missed by her many children, grandchildren, and now great-grandchildren. I met Mom when I was a shy 15-year-old who'd started dating her oldest son (the second-born in a household that included four sons and four daughters), and from the moment I knew her, she was a figure who loomed--and still looms--large in my life. I can hardly imagine my life without her in it.
|Mom, when she was young and single. She was quite a beauty.|
Well, Mom did live to see her children reach adulthood, all with their Faith intact. Well done, good and faithful servant! In a world where so many Catholics have lost their Faith entirely, or remain Catholics in name only ("C and E Catholics," they're sometimes called), Mom's brood continues to embrace their Faith and to pass it on to their children. There isn't a greater legacy than that. None of them would think of missing a Sunday Mass. And I find it so absolutely fitting that every year on Mom's birthday, her children (and their children, and their children, hopefully) will be sure to attend Mass--to celebrate the feast of All Saints, to fulfill their obligation to attend Mass on one of the holy days on the Church calendar...and in doing so, they will also honor this woman they loved so much.
|Mom with her oldest grandchild (our firstborn son) in 1985.|
Mom probably didn't waste as much time as I do wondering about the job she did as a mother; she just did what needed to be done, and she did it with a lot of laughter, love, and faith. If I could be half the mother to my five that she was to her eight, that would be quite an accomplishment.
Happy Birthday to a mother who is a role model for us all. We hope you're having a great birthday, surrounded by all the friends you were so devoted to during your time here with us!
*from Jon Spence's Becoming Jane Austen