SUNDAY TRAVELER: The Joy of Sacrament
By Megan Niedringhaus
Chameleon Religion Blogger
My cousin made his First Communion this weekend. As I packed into the car with three kids and my aunt and uncle and drove to St. Louis, I spent most of the five hour drive lamenting the fact that I was missing my sorority’s formal, and was instead heading home to stay in an empty house and take pictures all day.
But when I walked into church today, something inside me changed. Granted, a large part of this sudden change in emotion was due to the fact that I was back in the church where I discovered both my faith and who I wanted to be. But there was something else, something I couldn’t quite place. And then the second graders began processing in. Little boys in blue sport jackets and ties (and one girl who 86-ed the dress–right on) and little girls in dresses, veils and perfect curls filed past like extras from a Madeleine movie. When I caught my cousin’s eye, his face lit up with pride and anticipation. As Mass began, I was filled with this overwhelming joy and sense of calm. Suddenly, I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else. Thoughts of high heels and floor length gowns slipped away for a while.
Some might call it simply the joy of innocence, but what I felt was more than just seeing how happy my cousin and his classmates were. It was the joy of seeing someone so close to me experience a sacrament for the first time, and knowing that they’re an even bigger part of the Church, and our community, than they were before. And honestly…what could be better?
Catch “Sunday Traveler” when it is published every Sunday.