Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Christmas Play Spectacular

On Saturday afternoon, Kevin and I went to a play at Little Sisters of the Poor written and directed by Sister Joseph Marie. The play showed the remarkable parallels between the first Christmas and the initial promptings of the Holy Spirit in guiding foundress Saint Jeanne Jugan to start the Congregation of Little Sisters of the Poor.
The stage settings, designed by Nhan Duong, were very nicely done. There were a three-month-old infant, several children, and young teens in the cast along with the usual assortment of elderly residents.
I found it to be a sort of poetic justice to be sitting at Little Sisters holding hands with my husband
and watching my grandmother in this play focused on two women saying yes to God: the Blessed Mother and Jeanne Jugan. Ten years earlier I had walked into Little Sisters of the Poor to visit a resident who I met while volunteering there in high school and noticed a painting on the wall. It’s of a sailor asking Jeanne Jugan for her hand in marriage, and Jeanne telling him that God wants her for Himself.    
At that time, I had already fallen in love with Kevin, but I was in the midst of a period of discernment about what God wanted my life-long vocation to be. I burst into tears at the mere suggestion that it was indeed God’s will that I become a consecrated religious instead of marrying Kevin, but even then the Lord had given me the grace to want His will more than anything else. I kept praying and waiting for more clarity.
The play was a great reminder of several miracles that have occurred: a young woman conceived without sin, an unwed woman saying let it be done unto me even knowing the punishment for such a pregnancy could result in her being killed, a man having a dream to take his wife who was carrying the Savior in her womb, and giving birth to him in the humblest of surroundings.
Not only that, but I also made it through a very difficult period of discernment certain that God’s will was then (and is now) for me to keep Him first and foremost while loving Kevin as my husband. We’ve now been married for over six years. My grandma had a miraculous recovery a couple years back and has made it to her 87th Christmas.
She did a fine job playing the role of one of the benefactors who donated to Jeanne Jugan. I couldn’t help but laugh when grandma made a comment about having been “roped into being in the play last minute.” She had one line, put one apple in Jeanne’s basket, and was asked to wear an animal print hat as her costume but otherwise had on her regular clothes and got to sit there and watch the rest of the play in a front row seat. Gotta love Grandma, and I do!
Lord, thank You for the gift of Your Son, the Blessed Mother, my grandmother, Mom, husband, and the many people who have helped me grow closer to You over the years. Amen.
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