Monday, September 22, 2014

How Beautiful

We were able to attend Mass yesterday since all the craziness that surrounds my lower back happened. Being away from Our Lord in the gift of the Mass has been hard for my little soul, but thankfully and with His Grace, we were able to attend; and not only attend, but be blessed with eyes that were seeking to see and a heart that was yearning for His Beauty and Goodness.
Because our youngest was having a tough morning, and I can't carry him for now, my husband and him were back in the cry room for a large portion from the start. Eventually the little one fell asleep and they rejoined my three year old and I in the pews. During all that time that my oldest and I were in the pews, I have to say he did wonderfully. He was excited to be back at Mass, to see Fr. Tony from afar, snuggled up to me, read his church books, and listened. It was beautiful.
This Mass was beautiful for so many reasons. For starters, listening to the Gospel and seeing all the parts of Mass through the eyes of my little one were breathtaking. I saw how he saw the exchanges of gifts with the priest. I saw them bowing in reverence during the offering of gifts. I saw how in that gesture towards each other, they were recognizing the dignity and goodness that lives within each one of us, and thought: How beautiful. 
I listened to the choir and my eyes filled again and again: How beautiful.
During the consecration, kneeling to pray, seeing the beautiful community I was nestled in during a prayer that is so much bigger than me: How beautiful.
The vestments, the people, the souls, the prayers, the words, the scripture, the history, our faith: How beautiful.
All I kept doing was seeing everything with glimpses of wonder and awe. Wonder and awe of the beauty, the goodness, the servitude, the thanksgiving, the offerings, the processions, the Body of Christ, and more. Everything was overwhelmingly beautiful.
Since love grows within you, so beauty grows. For love is the beauty of the soul. 
-Saint Augustine
What made it more beautiful was the little set of eyes next to me. Seeing him soak it all up. Knowing that he gets to soak it up every time we attend. That filled my heart and soul in a way that could only be communicated with my mama-tears, again (Promise these aren't pregnancy hormones! You have to be preggo for that. I'll chalk it up to that amazing grace we often sing about.).
Suffering is a great grace; through suffering the soul becomes like the Savior; in suffering love becomes crystallized; the greater the suffering, the purer the love. 
-St. Faustina
And then, what tied everything in together for me in a way that had me praying the simple words of Thank you, Jesus. over and over again was when the choir sang the song How Beautiful. This song is one that brings me to tears every. single. time. Never have I not cried with this song. The truth of beauty, service, love, and suffering strike a chord in me every time. Reminding me that there is no beauty without suffering. No suffering lacking beauty. Because there is no suffering that is done without love. And love. Love is always beautiful. 
If you really want to love Jesus, first learn to suffer, because suffering teaches you to love. 
-St. Gemma Galgani
We have such a gift, not only in the Mass, but as mothers and women. Christ even tell us so when he encountered the Samaritan woman. He began by telling her, "If you knew the gift of God..." Gosh, do we have such a gift! He spoke this to her, a woman. A Samaritan woman he met, and in so doing, he demonstrated a beautiful exchange that calls us all to the living water. Not water that runs dry. This truth encourages me to not only more fully embrace the gift of Mass (And to be thankful for the graces that were shared to be more fully present this past weekend.) but also to be thankful for my vocation that calls me to suffering and to love. To service and beauty. My feminine and beautiful vocation of womanhood.
When we have been to Holy Communion, the balm of love envelops the soul as the flower envelops the bee. 
-Saint Jean Vianney
I had a beautiful time at Mass this past weekend. I'm thankful for this song that tied His Love and Suffering and the beautiful Sacrifice of the Mass together for my little heart. Now, with all the talk of the song, I feel it only right to leave you with a version I found on YouTube. I'll also write out the lyrics if you don't have time nor are in a place where you can play/listen to a song/video.

Prayers for all of us women and mothers! I know Mass this past weekend was beautiful for many. The scriptures were so rich and profound. What were your takeaways?



How Beautiful By Twila Paris

How beautiful the hands that served
The wine and the bread and the sons of the earth

How beautiful the feet that walked

The long dusty roads and the hill to the cross

How beautiful, how beautiful

How beautiful is the body of Christ


How beautiful the heart that bled

That took all my sin and bore it instead

How beautiful the tender eyes

That chose to forgive and never despise


How beautiful, how beautiful

How beautiful is the body of Christ


And as He laid down His life

We offer this sacrifice

That we will live just as he died

Willing to pay the price

Willing to pay the price

How beautiful the radiant bride

Who waits for her groom with His light in her eyes

How beautiful when humble hearts give

The fruit of pure lives so that others may live


How beautiful, how beautiful

How beautiful is the body of Christ


How beautiful the feet that bring

The sound of good news and the love of the King

How beautiful the hands that serve

The wine and the bread and the sons of the earth


How beautiful, how beautiful

How beautiful is the body of Christ

9 comments:

  1. Thank you for that video, and your reflection. I love the way that you weave in quotes from the saints. Yes, seeing it th rough their eyes brings such a deeper meaning.

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    1. Aaaaaaaaaand, that's Cardinal DiNardo from Houston at the end of the video! I had to go check to make sure, and it's him. Pretty cool.

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    2. So glad you enjoyed it, Ann-Marie! And, I totally missed Cardinal DiNardo. I actually had lunch with him and another friend once while I was living in Houston. Good times! I'll have to watch it again!

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  2. Our mass is so beautiful. I loved reading about it through your eyes today. As a convert to the faith I used to wonder why I was so pulled towards the Catholic Mass. Going through RCIA I came to realize it was simply because of what it was - A celebration of worship and praise with Christ truly present in the Blessed Sacrament. We are able to worship Him in His presence. There is no greater way to spend an hour of the day! Lovely post.

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    1. So true, MaryRuth! The True Presence in the Blessed Sacrament is what won my heart over in middle school and I haven't looked back since. So thankful for our Youth Minister making time for Adoration at such a young time in my life! If only I could keep these eyes always! It's hard not take so many gifts our Lord has given us for granted! Thanks so much for stopping by, too! Loved having you here :)

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  3. That video IS beautiful! I'm so glad you had such a grace filled Mass!

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    1. Isn't it, Mary?! I cried while watching it too. And, yes, Mass was definitely so-very-grace-filled. Maybe that just is bound to happen when you are forced to spend time away? there was just no way we could have gone those two weeks, between my back and the boys and their HFM. Thankfully I'm moving around and they aren't contagious anymore. Woohoo!

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  4. Replies
    1. Aw, thanks so much, Nell! It really was such a gift. Most times at Mass I leave in a crazy whirlwind!

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