01 November 2012

Communion of Saints

Happy Feast of All Saints! Don't forget that today is a holy day of obligation: all Catholics must attend Mass. If you haven't made it yet, many parishes will be holding Masses this evening.

Matt works quite late tonight, which is disappointing; I wanted to make a special meal to celebrate the feast day, but by the time he gets home, we will both be too tired and the baby will be on his way to bed. We had fun making a big deal out of Little Bear's nameday on Sunday, though, so we got one feast day celebration in this week. We were also able to attend Mass together this morning before Matt went to work, and we plan to pray a litany together tonight after he gets home.

For the month of November, our parish is displaying a number of relics for veneration, many borrowed from other local parishes. During his homily this morning, our pastor named some of the saints whose relics we are fortunate enough to have: There is a large reliquary with a number of Jesuits, a slightly smaller reliquary with a number of Franciscans, and quite a few individual reliquaries, including St. Nicholas, St. Therese of Liseux, and St. Gerard Majella, patron of expectant mothers.

Hearing St. Gerard's name, I only just managed to stifle a startled laugh. A year ago, I was working in the office of my parents' parish. Matt and I had only been married a couple of months, and while we were telling God that He could give us a child whenever He thought we were ready, if you had asked us our plans for the next year or two, "kids" would not have been on the list. So when I walked into my office one morning to find a relic of St. Gerard sitting on my desk, I was rather nonplussed. I texted Matt, flustered, and he tried to reassure me that someone must have just set it there because they didn't know where it belonged.

Less than a week later, the pregnancy test said +.

Isn't it something to experience the interaction of the communion of saints? As soon as we saw the result, any previous misgivings or hesitations were gone. We were both filled with joy and anticipation for something that the mere idea, just a week previous, had panicked me. I'm convinced that it was through St. Gerard that our hearts learned to look forward to God's plan, a new little boy, even more than we had looked forward to our own plans -- everything we thought we wanted sounds so empty now without Little Bear! We invoked St. Gerard's intercession numerous times after that throughout my pregnancy. His presence this month in our parish, full of children and growing families, seems most appropriate!

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