December is not a peaceful month. We know we should be preparing to rejoice, but we are preparing so hard that it’s exhausting. The world keeps sending bad news, families are struggling with so many things, and our Mother the Church is suffering through so many of Her children…
Then it was time for another community week-end, with more things to prepare and a schedule to meet… But brothers and sisters shared their hope, talents and courage, and it happened!
On December the 8th and 9th, we met (invited by the Knights of Columbus) at the Saint John Paul II Shrine in DC. Some brothers drove hours to come, bringing with them the names of loved ones and reminding us of those who could not make it, so that all of them were in our prayers. The Emmanuel School of Mission even came from New York City!
Praying at the Shrine is a blessing. Studying the mosaics and discovering their spiritual depth is a treat. And on the 8th of December, they celebrated Our Mother Mary with dozens of candles! The mosaics were glimmering all around, even nicer than usual on this special Saturday night.
On Sunday morning, after asking for some help at the front desk, I took the opportunity to warmly thank the man who was kindly guiding me back to the elevator. He answered with a big smile and without hesitation: “Thank John Paul!”