I posted this on my blog, but I figured more people would read it if I put it up here.
It is truly amazing what I think of sometimes. Other times, its not that surprising. And sometimes, I don't actually think, but rather absorb the thoughts of other like a human thought sponge. I use these thoughts violently as my own, expanding upon them until they explode like a hot dog that has been cooking too long. Classic example is my previous post. I was inspired by that post by a short commentary found in the Washington Times about illegal immigrants. The person made a quick comment that the illegals are not interested in becoming citizens. I took this idea and drew it a step further, running with it, invoking my historical powers. Now I do it again, thinking about the most holy union of two people in the world, marriage. From this same newspaper, although from a different day, there was another person who lamented the death of marriage to those who simply don't care. Why, the person pondered, do women in particular even bother with traditional things like white dresses and veils, since a lot of the brides are not virgins, as such garments symbolize. This made me think because this weekend, on Saturday, I attended a wedding. It was of a family friend (the groom), but what made matters more pressing to me was that I actually knew this family friend. I grew up with his sister and his brother was a close friend of my sister and cousin, as well as myself. I also knew him well enough, for he was a close friend of another of my cousins. So this was a family that I knew. It turns out I didn't know them as well as I thought. I probably was told, but I forgot, what I 'found out' Saturday. The sister, whom I had grown up with through high school at my parish, brought her little baby she recently had given birth to. She is not married. I also found out that the groom's parents were not together. Also, I found out that the lady that had gotten out of the car with the father was his new girlfriend, his new significant other, you could say. I don't know if the mother has found anyone else. Yet the wedding was performed in a Church, my parish, and the ceremony was performed (is that the right word? I know the people in the couple are the ministers of the sacrament, but what is the priest?) by the former pastor of my parish, one of the priests I am closest to. He is a legit priest, as will be shown. He's the one that came to my sister's baccalaureate and concelebrated the Mass. Anyway, so they had a marriage ceremony, with the priest and witnesses present. And Fr. McCann (that's the priest) gave a splendid homily on the importance of the ideal of life long marriage. I am almost certain the homily was directed at the parents, who were not living this ideal. Yet I fear that it fell on deaf ears. I then looked at the bride as she stood at the altar. She had a long, flowing white dress, with a light veil over her face. She had smiled as she walked down the altar, and I'm sure she still smiled as she said the words that wedded the two as one flesh. I stood there, and realized that it was one of the most beautiful things in existence. Yet I could not help but think back to the commentary about marriage. I wondered about the bride, then pushed it out of my head. I shouldn't worry about that. Everything falls into place.
"Let all mortal flesh keep silent. . ."
Also this weekend, Sunday, we had a Corpus Christi procession around the neighborhood. The neighborhood, by the way, is not a pretty place. Yet we marched with our lord under the umbra and with incense and candles. The weather was warm yet I did not notice. I was marching with my Lord. Rocky 6 is coming out soon. They are working on another Indiana Jones movie. Paul Newman and Robert Redford are working on a movie together again. Everyone is coming out of retirement. So did I. I was the emcee of that Corpus Christi procession. I lead the congregation through the neighborhood, almost taking a wrong turn only once. The incense held up, and nobody fainted. I lead my Lord in his holy parade, leading him out to the world, the back to his abode.
"Tantum Ergo Sacramentum . . ."
Beauty comes in many faces. It could be the sight of two people saying "I do" to each other as they unite in that sweetest of unions, the union of a man and a woman before God and man. It could be in the procession of a congregation of people, many of which don't understand the beauty of what is carried enthroned before them. I know for a fact not everyone understood. Yet some did. I did. It was truly beautiful.