Friday, April 3, 2015

Traveling Mercies

I was waiting for DH and the older two to return from Holy Thursday Mass and, when the 2 hour mark hit, I was ready to call it a day. The evil one was planted on my shoulder, whispering just loudly enough, "It's dark, it's raining and the kids will whine the entire time...why would you want to just jump in a car and visit random churches? How is that going to help?"

I am blessed that DH, when fresh from services and full of grace, has the power to move me beyond my slothfulness. I'm so glad he did. The kids were amazing. The trip was blessed.

We were a band of gypsies but, as usual, the Holy Spirit had it well in hand. We decided to pray one bit of the Divine Mercy Chaplet as we drove between each of the churches and we finished when we were headed home! At each church, we looked at two Stations, like 14 Stations spread across 7 churches. The difference between church Stations is fascinating...more for another time. Here's the church-visit-rundown.

Church #1: Resurrection

Come to think of it, it's kind of funny to start with this but, that's the ultimate point, yes? I was just led there because I passed near it on my jog this morning and figured it was as good as any. It wasn't until we were walking in that I remembered it was the parish of our dear friends who moved to WI. We prayed extra prayers for them in this incredibly beautiful parish.

Church #2: St. Margaret of Scotland

  These lines are the flash hitting the rain as it fell. I'm thinking Bernadette was winking at us ;0)

It was actually supposed to be the church down the street but there were no lights on there so we pressed on. I put "Catholic Church" into the GPS and it would eventually take us to the seminary (again, no go) but we passed here on the way, so we stopped. They had a GREETER! and COFFEE! now...that is a parish who knows how to host a 7-church visit! They also had the tiniest Stations I have ever seen.

Church #3 Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton 

 More smiles from heaven ;0)

#1 attends Little Flowers here and it is the parish of a family we know well so it was a very safe and comfortable stop (which was good because it was POURING at this point). They have, in my opinion, the most beautiful Stations I've ever seen. Just gorgeous.

Church # 4 Our Lady of Grace

 DH rarely has an opinion on styles of church but this was one he thoroughly disliked.
Other than the odd Stations (the weeping women had no faces) and nearly getting plowed into by a rouge bus driver, I thought it was nice to see such a prominent area to feature Our Lady.

Church #5 Sts. Simon and Jude
So by this time, it's getting late. People, especially people who just finished Mass or who refused to take their mother's advice about getting a nap earlier, were dragging. I love that the Holy Spirit swoops in at that moment. What chance is there, do you think, that in all the churches across the diocese, we would walk in at the exact moment that our very dear friends would be walking out? Can you say instant energy boost? What a blessing to share the end of this journey with them. 

Church #6 St. Anne

This is a local church and I was dragging myself so I didn't take a picture. Our friends were such good sports to journey with us to our last two stops (so, I'm sure they ended up with 8 or 10 churches...overachievers. LOL) It was a much needed blessing to me to spend even a short time with these people who are like us in so many ways. It is a balm to me to see the kids jumping around together. We are so blessed.

Church #7 St. Bernard

No picture again...just think "scaffold" and you have it pretty much. Yes, it's still under construction. Yes, the last two Stations were missing because they are in the "construction zone". Yes, #1 said, "you don't need to look at a picture to do the Stations...just imagine it in your head."

So, we prayed our last two Stations, spent some time with Jesus in the relocated tabernacle, gave final "goodbyes" to our friends and headed off for home. "Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world."

I'm doubt about it. There is also no doubt that it is a very "good" exhaustion. One that comes from following the whispering of the Holy Spirit. The road is not always easy but it is always full of unexpected grace.

We are blessed. Happy Good Friday!


  1. What a beautiful thing to do as a family on Holy Thursday. I'm thinking it would take us quite a bit longer to hit that many, but it's a neat idea. Enjoyed seeing some families places ;^). Miss you guys!

  2. We haven't been able to do a seven church tour since before we had kids, but it's a tradition I *very much miss*. I'm hoping maybe in a few more years, we can attempt it? (when the big kids can at least assist in all the buckling and unbuckling of the littles!)