"Love follows knowledge."
"Beauty above all beauty!"
– St. Catherine of Siena

Monday, April 1, 2013

Matthew Monday: Easter Mass

I took Matthew to Easter Mass yesterday.  Unfortunately I didn't take a picture, but he just looked so adorable.  He had on a stripped green and white, long sleeved polo shirt and tan slacks.  He just looks so handsome with his dark hair combed nicely. 

I think this was his third mass, other than his baptism.  The first two times we sat in what my church sort of isolates as a section for people with children, in the back corner with glass encasing.  I've never seen anything like that in any other church, but it's helpful for noisy kids.  Those two times we stayed through the homily and credo.  That's about the point he couldn't help being too active.  There's only so much constraint a two or three year old can take.

This time I took him into the main pews to where I normally sit.  I kind of wanted to show him off to the people who normally sit around me.  I will say he was very shy, but he did talk to the woman who normally sits next to me.  I don't even know her name, and yet we're usually both there every Sunday.  I do know she's a grandmother, and she started talking to him like a grandmother, and Matthew just loved it.  I told her he was adopted, and she in turn said she had been adopted as a child.  Isn't that something? 

What hooks Matthew with church is the music.  He doesn't understand anything else, but he does listen intently, hoping to hear a song he knows.  He keeps wanting to hear "The Wheels On the Bus," LOL!  No he didn't hear it.  The other two times at Mass I had to leave because I thought Matthew was getting a bit rambunctious.  This time, sitting in the crowded pews on a packed Easter Mass, he got intimidated and began to well up and cry.  It was a silent crying.  He pushed his head into me and his hands covered his eyes.  And when it got to the standing parts I had to pick him up and hold him. 

I got him to stop crying by taking out a pen and paper from my jacket pocket and having him scribble.  He did it quietly, thank God.  I got the idea from two children slightly older who were sitting two pews ahead who had crayons.  On the kneeling parts during the Liturgy of the Eucharist, I had to kneel on one knee and put him on my other.  Try that some time.  And then I got him to shake hands on the sign of the peace.  He was shy but I think he liked that.  There were two teenage girls sitting behind me that I think were ogling him the whole time and insisted on shaking his hand.  He's got such a way with the ladies. :)

We left when everyone was going up to receive communion.  He almost made it through the whole mass.  Next time I think I'll have him sit by the organist and choir.  I think that will keep him interested longer.


  1. How sweet! I had to do similar things with my youngest, who was two at the time I converted. I would bring small, quiet toys for her at first, but as she got a little older I would pick her up when we stood, and whisper in her ear that Jesus was there. She also liked to hold the missal.
    The more you take Matthew, the more accustomed he will get to the sights and sounds. He sounds like he did really well! And that he is definitely going to be a girl magnet, lol.

    1. Thanks. I'll try to bring him more frequently. The 9:30 mass is supposed to be the children's mass, but it's hard to get early for it. I'm also not so fond of it because there are lots of children and someone is always crying at some point. But Matthew might like to watch the children's choir.

  2. Manny many suburban churches have a room such as you described, and they are called "crying rooms" because that's where parents with crying or noisy young children would retreat to when necessary. For what it is worth, my mother never took my sister or I to Mass until we started kindergarten because she knew we couldn't sit still or be quiet. On the other hand, I see a family of six nearly every Sunday, the oldest being under 5 years of age, and those kids don't make a peep. I would like to know how their parents manage to achieve this because many was the time I had to take mine outside or in the vestibule because of their antics. My most devout child now was the biggest offender then. Go figure! If you got any photos of Matthew in his Easter finery, please post them, I'd love to see them. Easter blessings! Joyce

    1. I had never heard or seen a "crying room" before. Thanks for letting me know it's more widespread. Unfortunately there were no pictures taken yesterday. I asked my wife to take her camera to my mother's house where we celebrated the holiday, but she had forgotten.