Guest Post by Allison Salerno
About 8 last night, during the snowstorm, an ancient, snow-laden tree fell on a power line a few houses away. Our little home fell into darkness. My husband, who had been working on the computer, went upstairs to bed. Gone was the TV show Gabriel, 13, was watching. Gone was my phone conversation with a girlfriend across town. I told Lucas, 10, to turn off the stove in the kitchen where he was making cocoa and join us in the family room. We were all dressed in our pajamas.
With the noise of the outside world turned off, I knit a red wool scarf by candlelight while Gabriel told us in great detail about the film he wants to make–a modernization of the Jekyll and Hyde story. (Recently, he completed his first film, which took two years to make.)
Soon we were all sleepy, and Gabriel went upstairs to his room. Lucas asked if he and I could sleep on the two couches in the family room—he on the loveseat and me on the larger sofa. He ran upstairs to gather blankets.
Once I blew out the candles, Lucas said he felt frightened because of the dark and the silence. The only light was outside—the moon on the snow. The only sound was one of our neighbors shoveling his sidewalk.I suggested we say some prayers. We usually start off taking turns thanking God for nice things that happened during our day. We think of three things each.
And so I began by thanking God for the beautiful snow. Lucas thanked him for the shoveling, which he really enjoyed. I thanked God for the popcorn we ate. Lucas gave thanks for the hours of sledding he had done with friends, and I thanked God that Daddy had come home safe from work.
It was Lucas’s turn. “I can’t think of anything else,” he said. “Oh—for right now.”
We said an Our Father together. Then I decided to teach him the Glory Be prayer. I said a phrase of it and Lucas repeated.
Glory be to the Father
And to The Son
And to the Holy Spirit,
As it was in the beginning,
And ever shall be,
World without end.
We finished with a Hail Mary.
I asked Lucas which prayer he liked the best. “The Glory Be,” he said. “Because I like the rhythm. And it tells us God is everywhere.”
Moments later, my son’s breathing slowed. He was asleep.