Friday, November 23, 2012

"The Mass of the Very Old Men"

I really enjoy Elizabeth Scalia's writing. She's honest, eloquent, observant ...
In her recent piece for First Things, she captures the beauty of masculine spirituality ... at 7 am Mass at her home parish. 
You'll read descriptions like this:
6:40 AM: Across from him, on the left, a stiff-kneed gardener brings his weekly gift to Mary–clippings from his own yard. Throughout the year he matches his seasonal snippings with the liturgical calendar and creates a cohesive narrative of shape and color. In the depths of winter, he brings promise with witch hazel and hellebore, and spring delivers the deep purple crocuses and irises so eloquent of repentance and sorrow; they are followed by graceful branches of deep yellow forsythias and then comes a riotous profusion of roses, day lilies, and coneflowers throughout the summer, before he quiets things down with the simple Montauk Daisies of September. Now, he is bringing the last of his storm-battered, rust-colored mums, intermingled with the few remaining pretty leaves and some acorns kept back from the squirrels. Soon he will bring the spear-sharp-tipped holly, marking Advent with a prophecy of Lent; the gifts continue.
6:42 AM: Behind me comes the rhythmic rattle of a rosary against wood, and I know that into the pew has slipped a cheerful small man who rarely does more than smile and nod because he does not like to admit his hearing loss, which reveals itself in his booming responses to the Mass.

And then hear the thoughts meandering through her head on an early Sunday morning.
Sit down with a cup of coffee and maybe leftover pie from yesterday and read, "The Mass of the Very Old Men."

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