Thursday, August 28, 2008


Growing up, "Mary" was a 4-letter word (false god) in my house. Today she is a key figure in my life, and in the lives of those around me. Kathleen and I each have several Virgen De Guadalupe candles around our house in strategic places: kitchen, bedroom, desk, altar. And I hope Mary doesn't find it sacrilegious, but she makes an awfully good door stop, too. When one of us needs some extra help, we ask of the other, "Light the Marys for me at ________ O'clock, when I have to do _______________."

There are days that need the Marys in general, nothing specific, just an overall sense of "I need all the help I can get today." Knowing the Marys are in on the scheme of things is quite comforting to me.

Today there is a row of Marys on my altar, and they are all aglow. There are friends sending their kids off to college for the first time, there is someone taking an important exam, one desperately looking for housing so she can enroll her daughter in first grade before Tuesday. One is for my father-in-law, recovering from surgery. One is for a friend trying to get pregnant in an "unconventional" way. I gotta think Mary has a particular understanding of that issue.

And one is for my friend that was killed, and her family. There is such a sense of helplessness, and all I am left knowing what to do is pray, and hold the family in love, and hope that that's not "nothing," but "everything," instead.


Maddy said...

We are not helpless even though it feels like it sometimes.
Best wishes

Kathryn said...

Mother Mary has helped me more times than I can count with her beautiful, calming energy. I love the candle idea. She is the perfect one to send prayers for your friend's family.

By the way, my best friend in the world was named Kathleen - a wise and spiritual teacher who passed in 2003. That name caught me off guard.

She said...

Prayer is often the MOST ACTIVE thing we can do for others (and ourselves)! It's not nothing. That I know for certain!

Hugs and love to you.

Jerri said...

Blessings to you and to all those for whom the Marys glow.

Michelle O'Neil said...

It's not nothing Dearheart.


Joanne said...

Your last line says it all. This is everything.

drama mama said...


You know how I feel about our girl Lupe/Mary.

She knows how it feels to have a child that no one understands.

She knows from pain. And patience. And forgiveness.

She will heal you, your friends.

Keep lighting those luminarias.

Angie Ledbetter said...

Awesome! There is not one thing us earthly mothers can't turn to for understanding and help from Mommy Mary. She had every heartache and trouble before us. What a powerful advocate. And surely She has Jesus's ear! (Check out Her image as Our Lady of Grace if you get the chance.)

Kapuananiokalaniakea said...

Mary is A-MAZE-ING!
Just found out that my oldest son prays to/with her before each race! She has done well for him. Knew there was something special about that boy!

Kapuananiokalaniakea said...

PS You are too!

therextras said...

Perfectly and beautifully expressed. Barbara

(You are now on my favorites list!)