Monday, November 7, 2011

All Saints Mass

"The only real sadness in life is not to become a saint."
                                                                 19th Century French Spiritual Writer

This morning, at Mass, the children processed in with their Saints’ costumes on:
St Mary, St Teresa of Lisieux, St Mary Magdalene, St Thomas, St Nicolas, St Andrew,
and on and on in the myriad variety of personalities;
of those surrendered to Christ living through them,
expressing a glimpse of God.

Tales and adventures of martyrs’ lives, gruesome ends.
Fierce strength and faith coming from the mouths of little people was powerful;
resonating across all gathered in the slanting spectrum through stained glass.
Sitting and listening in peace with violence and heroism all around
but also, quiet, humble loving extraordinarily
the ordinary in the burning realms of each moment; the other as other;
the crucible of the daily.

Each child stood speaking to the assembly, boldly expressing passions of those who love Jesus, above all else, with an unreasonable and excessive love. A love that brought them into the presence of Christ’s joy indwelling and terrible suffering.

Each child stood in the brightening, grasping the crosses they are born into,
listening and speaking sanctification, standing before the altar
telling theatrics of truth;
the Saints’ passions and Liturgy of the Word;
the manifestations of the glory of Christ.

Their words spinning nets of faith, of heroic and convicted choice: of what can be
when Christ climbs into the boats of our lives;
to surrender over and over to our unfathomable God;
committing, repeatedly, to the daily arduous and small sacrifices of love.

They are green unfurling in the Body of Christ.
May they blaze in love and friendship with Jesus. 
May the saints stoop low between heaven’s dimensions and guide them, all of us, toward God.

While reciting the Lord’s prayer, the entire grade school of children
standing within pews,
began shuffling sideways,
reaching across aisles, joining hands, all.
A moment's linking lives
in a choreography of love:
plates of hearts shifting
the ground of the holy into the mystic.

Our prayer rising above our diffusing deficiencies and brokenness into one the other.
Our inherence in the dawning, beneath the constellations of Saints
burning oh so brightly
these darkened

prisms of colors
labyrinths of sin.

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