Sunday

In church, today, an elderly couple sat two pews in front of me, a bit apart. They both had short, grey hair. He reached over and stroked the nape of her neck, tenderly. I quickly decided this was happening because they were Christian, so not overcome with the hatred that has consumed men and women. My mind always writes these stories.

I knelt down to pray and my head was bowed. My neck was exposed because I had put my hair up in a clip. I was praying for comfort.

I asked Jesus to please come, here, as in come here, which I had never thought to ask before. I read this in a book by Teresa of Avila, that you have to picture him in front of you as you pray. Right away, I “saw” the edges of his robe, as he approached, and felt a warm hand radiating kindness over my neck, not touching it. My eyes filled with tears. I could swear he said, “dear child,” but I can never tell what is my own mind and what isn’t.
This has never happened before, in Church. I don’t go very often, at all.

Once I was on an Amtrak train in the deep south and the guy working the cafe car called me “dear child,” when he asked me what I wanted. I never forgot it.

When the Priest, in his rust colored robe, shook my hand on the way out, he seemed to know what had happened.

**

Chambers Street subway platform, hardly anybody there: A man bent over and a small plastic bottle of Beefeater’s gin dropped from his pocket. He knelt down and picked it up. He looked around. The train came.

Comments

  1. Greg Baysans says:

    The last paragraph is a wonderful “postscript” to this. I enjoyed this very much.

  2. Cheryl Nagel says:

    Celia, This was so touching. You did it again.
    Cheryl

  3. Clark Baker says:

    When God taps you on the shoulder, you know it – Thank you for sharing your very personal experience. You’re blessed.

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