This morning, my husband and I attended 8:30 Mass at our new parish in VA. (Joining us was our youngest son, who flew in yesterday from Germany to enjoy a couple of weeks of leave in the good old U S of A.) We have become quite fond of our new little parish church, located at the center of our new little town. We are also growing fond of our new pastor, a very holy and engaging priest who has had an interesting history: during his first career, before he answered a calling to the priesthood, he was a special agent in the CIA.
Today, Father spoke about vocations, and the need to pray for them. He quoted Saint John Bosco, who claimed that one out of every three men would receive a calling--think about that, one out of three! How, then, can Holy Mother Church be experiencing a "priest shortage"? He reminded Catholic parents of the need to portray the priesthood in a positive light so that our sons who might be called are willing to listen. What we need to really pray for, he said, is not so much the vocations themselves, because they are abundant; but rather we must pray that the men chosen by the Holy Spirit to have those vocations will be open to hearing and answering the call. I leaned over and nudged my son and whispered, "You're our only hope, now that all of your brothers are married!" And because great minds think alike, as we exited the church after Mass and crossed the parking lot to the car, my husband also gently teased him about the fact that he must be the one in our family who's destined to become a priest. He good-naturedly made sure to point out to us that one in three men didn't necessarily mean one in three men in every family.
When this youngest son of ours was in middle school, he was always scrupulously aware of the state of his soul; he used to come and tell us on Friday nights that he would need a ride to church the next day for Confession (a practice that would continue until he was a licensed driver himself). He seemed so advanced in his Faith for someone so young, and we used to wonder if he ever thought he might have a vocation. But he never really talked about it. Years later, he did admit that the idea did cross his mind on occasion. But he said that was mostly because random adults, completely out of the blue, would ask him if he ever thought about becoming a priest, and he couldn't help but wonder if this was God's way of letting him know that he'd been chosen.
Anyway, on the drive back home in the car, we talked about how the call to Christian fatherhood is also a noble and absolutely vital vocation in our increasingly fallen world. And that is the call our baby believes he is hearing--at this point, at least. He was always a serious and mature-beyond-his-years little guy, trying desperately to catch up to his four older brothers. He has tried to emulate them his whole life, and now they are all married to lovely Catholic women and bringing forth into the world a small army of souls--of future soldiers for Christ--with those women. It is the sort of life he can well envision for himself one day, too.
Okay, this a "My Sunday Best" post, so I guess I should talk a little bit about Mass fashions now, shouldn't I?
|With our three VA sons and their gals at the shower in 2014--and my guy of course.|
Awkward selfie taken today, with an expression that's a cross between Zoolander's "Blue Steel"
and Dana Carvey's "Church Lady." (With an unmade bed in the background, no less.)
I saw the most beautiful explanation for why I feel compelled to veil in a recent Instagram post, and I thought I'd share it with you here.
Before I sign off, I thought I'd show you some other vintage beauties that I acquired recently (as long as we're talking fashions here). My siblings and I held a garage sale a few weeks ago to clear out our mother's home before selling it, now that our dad is gone and she has moved into an assisted living facility. Mom put aside the things she wanted to have at her new place and then urged us kids to take whatever clothes, furniture, artwork, or knickknacks we wanted before the sale started. I came across some lovely vintage items that I couldn't bear to part with. Although I will probably never wear these classic accessories, I just wanted to keep them in the family.
On that note, I think I'll call wrap up this post. But head on over to Rosie's. There are bound to be much better Sunday Best fashions over there.