Due to a bunch of scheduling thingies, it looked for a while like Jan was going to have to go to St. Pius up the street while I would have to go to Blessed Sacrament alone.
But at the last minute, we figured out we could both go to St. Pius, which really meant a lot to me. Jan wore a lovely summer dress and her adorable purple hat, all fitting on a beautiful summer day. Mass was good (duh!) and the homily was simple and good, as was the liturgy. I like St. Pius a lot. Good, uncomplicated liturgy. Plain ordinary Catholics from every color, culture, and stripe. Exactly the way an ordinary parish should be. I go there for daily Mass most days and sometimes turn up there for prayer nights. There’s a sweet spirit about the place that I assume is the Holy Spirit and a lot of angelic presence. You just sit there on prayer nights and let the peace soak in. No culture war BS. Just ordinary folk trying to stumble along and be good Catholics. I love it.
Anyway, once Mass was over I dropped Jan home (she had a lunch date with a pal and they were visiting the art museum in Edmonds–a perfect thing to do on a Sunday). I had to pop down to Blessed Sacrament down in the U District for a Knights of Columbus meeting.
I’m not much of a joiner, but a couple of years ago, it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to me to join the Knights so I could help out with pancake breakfasts and Oktoberfests and parish shindigs and get to know some of the guys. So I did. The Super Duper Secret Initiation Ceremonies cracked me up. It hails from the 19th century when Secret Societies were all the rage–and virtually all of them were virulently anti-Catholic. So the Fr. McGivney, the founder, cooked up a Catholic one and found a way to make it help Italians (the Mexican drug dealers and rapists of Good White Trumpian American imagination of the time)…
…feel welcome and a part of the American experiment. That’s why it’s called the Knights of *Columbus*. Hey look! An Italian discovered America! You Italian immigrants are part of the American story! Don’t pay any attention to the White Protestant bigots with the weird hair trying to scapegoat you! (This was before American Catholics had stupidly decided to side with white Protestant bigots against fellow Catholics based on skin color as those under the spell of quislings like Sean Hannity do now.)
So they got the Knights going with all the secret handshakes and “WHO SEEKS ENTRY?” ritual and “You must swear never to reveal what transpires here (unless, you know, you are under oath and there’s some good reason and besides, all we are asking is that you be a good Catholic and say this Rosary so no biggie)” stuff. I loved it. It cracked me up. The next day, I walked up to my Grand Knight, shook his hand and whispered in his ear, “Hail Hydra!”
Tee, as they say, hee.
Then I went home and Luke brought Lucy the Cuteness over. The plan was a trip to the zoo for Grandpa and his girl Lucy while Luke caught up on some stuff he needed to do. Lucy did not know about the zoo trip till I broke the news and her eyes lit up with glee. She is a huge animal lover and will become the world’s first professional gymnast zoologist (as she proved by instantly turning several cartwheels).
So we headed off to the zoo for what I assumed would be about a two hour tour but which wound up lasting four hours. Lucy could have easily gone to till sundown, being powered by cotton candy. She was still turning cartwheels by trip’s end while her on-the downhill-slope-toward-60 grandfather was eagerly seeking the way back to the car. But it was glorious fun all the same. We saw zebras, tigers, springboks, hippos, lions, kangaroos, grizzly bears, penguins, otters, and many other critters. And we fed budgies off little sticks full of seeds and one of them landed on Lucy’s hand, which was the huge thrill of the day.
When we got home, cousin Kyle from New Orleans was there with Cow and Pete and Jan. So we got to hang with him for a while and eat burgers out on the back patio in the westering sun. We swapped hilarious stories and cracked each other up while Lucy had fun getting shpritzed by the hose.
That night, I conked out and slept like a rock. A wonderful gift of a Sunday. Thanks be to God through our Lord Jesus Christ.