The priest, who will be leaving and going to a parish in Fairfield, had such a nice speaking voice. He had a pleasant voice and was so easy to listen to. I am not sure if it was a French accent or not, but it sounded like he could have been French.
After Mass, I said hello to him and shared with him what my New Year’s Resolution is about. He never let go of my hand that he had been shaking and looked at me with a real intentional intensity. It was as if, I was the only person that he was focusing on, even though some women were saying good-bye or waiting for him. He truly gave me his “undivided attention”. It was intense, but not creepy in any way. It was very genuine and calming for me.
The women who spoke to him before me, following the Mass, were telling him how sad they were that he is leaving. I can see why. I think he has a really nice way about him.
The priest announced the mass was being said for Michael Hess. I thought he said Michael Ness at first. Michael Ness, a young man who passed away last Fall, is the son of my friend, Liz. I couldn’t help but think of how beautiful and graceful Liz has been throughout these very difficult past several months as I sat in these beautiful and peaceful surrounding. As it turned out, the mass was for Hess, not Ness, but that did not make me stop thinking of this beautiful love story between Mother and Son. To me, Liz is living “Mary’s story” and through her grace and example, I realize how interconnected the story of Mary and Jesus is to all of our relationships.
The sermon was all about actively living the gospel rather than just speaking about it. Maybe with Liz on my mind, the sermon made me think about how often I have the opportunity to be more Christ-like. Usually, I try to say nice things to people or have nice thoughts about doing something special for someone, but I often don’t follow through. In the meeting last week for my Haiti mission trip (coming up soon!!!) we talked about “being God through our hands and feet” without any words. Interesting idea! I do know it, but don’t always do it! That old adage, actions speak louder than words is definitely one that I should keep in mind; and actually wish many others did too!
The church itself was very “earthy”. It was pretty with wide big windows. The grounds were beautifully kept and flowers and outdoor statues surrounded the church itself. It was a peaceful setting and I was so happy that I got up early to share a 7:45am Mass with about 8 other people.