So I didn’t want just my wife to have all the fun with this blog, so I’m writing a post. Hope I’m half as interesting as she is, I love to read her writing and am so glad to finally try writing one.
Today I was blessed to attend a Denver Mass of Holy Orders where 7 men were ordained as transitional Deacons. This also solidifies their vow to celibacy and in about a year they will be ordained priests. Witnessing this Mass was truly a blessing for me and somehow brought me back to my own wedding day. And really this is their wedding day, or maybe more like a betrothal, as their bride is the Church. So there they are in a standing room only Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. While Denver outside is a beautiful day and the city is beginning to fill for the annual St. Patrick’s Day, that all paled in comparison to the beauty inside the church. I will not delve into the details of this Mass, but I highly recommend attending an ordination Mass if you never have.
So fast forward to the middle of the ceremony, the 7 are now lying prostrate in front of the altar while 2 seminarians are leading the entire Church in a Litany of the Saints. The power of this prayer could be felt as the choir of angels and the communion of Saints were singing along in celebration. And I could only imagine what was going through their minds until I realized that the feeling had to be similar to my wedding. Our wedding was at a beautiful little country church in Waynesboro, VA on a gorgeous day in September 2010. I remember after professing our vows we did a Marian offering, which resulted in a walk down the aisle as this church was so small, her statue would only fit near the entry in the back of the church. This allowed me to see everyone in attendance celebrating with us, then Julianne and I prayed together a Hail Mary.
During this prayer I felt a cloud envelop me with comfort that now I will serve my bride with all my heart. That only through the grace of God could I love her as a servant. This is when the tears of joy finally hit me, even though she had been sobbing since she arrived, this is when it hit me. And it was pure joy.
So returning to the ordination, right after these guys get vested and hands laid on them ordaining them Deacons I figured they would just go back to their seat in the pew. Nope, they started preparing the altar for communion, getting right to work. They are servants of the Church their bride, and that didn’t begin after the reception it began right away! And there was pure joy on their faces. This brought it home to me that I must be joyful in my marriage, especially in the small things. Not to pout or grumble when I’m asked to do something, but to take the initiative to do it before being asked as a gift instead of a chore. I’m so grateful that this day brought me back to my wedding day after receiving communion. I glanced at Christ crucified on the cross and he said you will love your bride as I loved the Church. Incredible act of love!
This also has been on my mind this week watching Pope Francis be ordained and the humble small ways he has been serving the Church. What an example for men to step up and serve as we have been called. And look how joyful he was on accepting the servant of the entire Church!