Tag Archives: water

Holy Water for sure

When I entered the side of the church, I noticed there was no Holy water. I knew the dispenser was at the front, so I pulled out the inner font to get a refill. I had plenty of time to go back and forth before other parishioners arrived.

At the entrance, I turned my attention to the Holy water vessel in the corner. I pushed the button but the spout was bone dry. I turned to our Pastor, also in the vestibule, readying the other celebrants. He must have seen my unknowing expression, and said, “Let’s take care of that right now. Go to the sacristy and find a bucket. Bring me some water to fill it up.”

I’ve not spent much time in the sacristy and didn’t remember seeing any buckets. Regardless, I headed back into the church to help address what I interpreted as a religious crisis.

Now in the sacristy, I saw songbooks to my left and a closet of robes on the right. The sink was straight ahead but there were no buckets. I spun around: a cross, a bookshelf, a wastebasket, Ahh! a big green watering can.I filled it as fast as the faucet would allow.

I walked as calmly as I could, back down the aisle of pews, with my creative plastic salvation.

I filled the stainless steel vessel and Father approved by saying, “Now go get a couple more of those.”

Back in the sacristy, I hurriedly focused more on filling the green watering can than which way my water spout was tipped. At the half full mark, I realized I was spilling water all over the counter. I reached for the first thing I saw and wiped up my mess with a crisp white piece of linen that was probably already blessed for another occasion.

Knowing the error of my ways, I walked as solemnly as I could, past all the pews filling with parishioners.

I added the contents of my second watering can to the Holy water vessel. Father peeked in and said, “One more should do it.”

The pressure! I couldn’t imagine how Moses or the apostles felt being spoken to by God. I was sweating unholy bullets just trying to fill a water vessel for the local Pastor.

I returned to the sacristy a third time without incident.

Until I started to walk back. The woman that cares for the altar was in the first pew. She had seen my mission from the start, stopped me and said, “We use that for the plants. We put Miracle Grow in there, ‘ya know.”

My heart immediately sank. I wasn’t even done yet and had also slopped up one of her linens in the process. I smiled at her with no answers, or options, and continued past everyone in the church.

I poured my last full watering can into the Holy water receptacle. Father readied to give a quick blessing while I considered what the woman said to me.

– Nobody will be drinking it.

– Father was aware of my bucket choice.

– We resolved the situation in record time.

After the blessing, I put the stainless steel cover back on top of the Holy water dispensary. I refilled the font insert and replaced it at the side of the church. I considered how Holy water renews faith. Some believe it also repels evil. Maybe this batch would even help miracles grow?

Tested Faith

My father had his faith tested earlier this year. It was painfully in front of all of us to witness and try to determine how, and IF, we could even help. One of my sisters managed the appointments and meds. We were all continually checking in at the house. I visited at night and took him to Mass on the weekends.

A friend at work had asked how he was doing. She’d met my Dad only briefly the year prior. They got along famously for those few short minutes. He is a religious man and she is a Christian life coach. I never witnessed such an immediate bond. I’d also never talked to her about spirituality until the day she inquired about my father. I told her he wasn’t good at all and to please pray for him. I let her know how helpless we all were. She told me to pray for wisdom.

I never knew that was an option. So I did. I also tried to read parts of the book of Wisdom that night.

That Saturday, my father and I went to 4:00 Mass again.

The readings included Matthew 14:22-36. It stayed with me and I wished my father had his faith at the time he needed it the most.

The next day I went to his house and gave him one of my toy boats. I told him, “Ralph, just get out of the boat.”

That was all. I knew it wasn’t a quick fix but it seemed like a needed visual.

That boat has been on his kitchen table for months. If he wasn’t focused on it, I certainly was every time I visited.

Only a short time ago, my Dad started to seem like himself again. He was less anxious. He stopped dwelling on the past and worrying about the present. The family started saying it out loud – “Dad is going to be okay.” My father was talking about the future again. Reading. Writing. Engaging. It was a long road for him and I was glad he’d finally turned onto a new path.

I went to the house to pick him up for Mass again this weekend. My father had a package for me to open. I didn’t know why he was giving me something or what to expect. When I opened the lid, I understood. It was his note of confirmation – and the boat.

When I saw it, the water was tears down my face.

It HAD helped. My father IS saved – and I AM a believer.

Water Works

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The summer of my almost 50 birthday and it was great to be a kid again.  Little Italy and their street fair turned me into a little girl.  Being the goofball in our group, I wondered if I’d been taken seriously during other parts of our day.  So, when I wanted to play a carnival game, I didn’t think I’d have any takers.  How wrong I was.  Of course my gangsta turned documentarian bestie would join me.  Why wouldn’t she want to take up a gun in Manhattan, shoot water at a bullseye and get it all on film?  The only thing missing for her and I to tell our story was a leading man.  Or several.

We were ready to lock-and-load but the barker wasn’t turning on the guns until he had a few more dollars to make a splash of cash.  My impatient and creative self gave him some feedback.  “Get the sailors over here.”  His muse over the microphone wasn’t amusing enough.  Some quick musing on my part and I told him to tell them, “It’s a water game!  How can you loose?”

Let’s just say after a few more choruses, they took the bait.  When I was little, I certainly didn’t dream about fishing for sailors.  Navy men were uncles and heroes.   And now that I was old enough to be the aunt, the sailors were young enough to be my nephews.  Oh well.  That just meant we could teach them a thing or two.  I was supposed to win but my girlfriend had my back.  She grabbed us the win.  She selected a stuffed Hello Kitty prize.  The sailors lost, in fact also got stuffed!, and were the good-bye booby prize.

Of course, we navigated the terms.  They could only submerge back into the crowd after I went to the dark side.  I still needed a moment to accept my own loss.  I screamed, “What the hell?!”  and stomped in my little girl tantrum circle.  Not that I was competitive.  It was only a water game.  WHERE THE GIRLS BEAT THE NAVY BOYS!  In fact, we swabbed the deck with their asses.  Not that any of us noticed.  We just wanted a picture for our scrapbooks.  See you later boys.  We got what we wanted.  And we knew how to get it.  Water worked.