Monday, March 29, 2010

Fond Memories of Holy Week: Part III

     On Good Friday when our row got up to venerate the cross, he remained seated. I was disappointed. A few minutes after we returned, Kevin went up on his own and joined the line. My heart skipped a beat.
     I was very curious to see how the Easter Vigil would go. It’s a long Mass since many readings are done and songs are sung that serve as a summary of the faith. They begin in Genesis starting with God creating the world and finding it good and end up in the New Testament with Christ’s rising from the dead and appearing to the disciples. Besides the trip through the Bible, any RCIA candidates (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) are Baptized (if they haven’t been previously), given First Communion, and Confirmation. Children who have not yet been Baptized and/or whose parents are being brought into the church are also given the sacraments of initiation at this time.
     It is a very powerful, very moving service—one that includes all the major elements of the Catholic Christian faith. I was really hoping Kevin wouldn’t get bored and start pulling on my shirt like a toddler asking how much longer before we could leave.
     Kevin loved taking part in the Mass. When it came time for Communion, he received both the Body and Blood of Christ. He paid attention to all the readings, said the prayers he remembered, and held my hand. I was overjoyed!
     Afterwards Kevin said the Easter Triduum, particularly the Easter Vigil, helped him to understand the faith. What’s more, when he returned to Rochester after that weekend, he started going to Mass on his own, usually at St. Charles, a church with great significance for both of our families. Kevin’s aunt and uncle attended the parish and knew my grandmother from there which is how our family got to rent the cottage, and thereby meet Kevin and his father, the real Harry Potter. It’s also the church where my parents were married.
     On Easter Sunday, we celebrated Mass in the Atrium Chapel at Roanoke College. I enjoyed being a Confirmation sponsor. Afterwards, we had a reception with lots of wonderful food. That’s when Fr. Remi, the pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help and the priest who ministered to our Catholic Campus Ministry, recognized Kevin’s dedication. After finding out he’d driven down from upstate New York to spend four days attending church with me, he named Kevin “the patron saint of boyfriends.” I agreed.
     All proof that countless miracles are still happening in the world. God is awesome!
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