Sunday, November 4, 2012

God's call

            Two years ago when my oldest son was old enough to be an altar server, I assumed we would sign him right up.  I was picturing him in his little cassock and surplice looking holy and reverent as he assisted at Mass.  He had other ideas.  He did not want to be on the altar.  He did not want people looking at him.  

            I thought about insisting.  After all what nice Catholic boy goes his whole childhood without ever serving Mass?  Every little Catholic boy should be an altar server (I feel differently about my girls being altar servers, but I am old fashioned that way).  I really wanted to insist but Tim said we should not push.  So we let the whole thing go.  He went through fourth grade sitting next to us in the pew.  He went through fifth grade, still next to us.  

            Then one week, after Mass, a friend casually asked my son why he did not serve at Mass.  He sort of shrugged noncommittally.  Later that day, I had a little talk with him.  I still did not push, but I did suggest he think about altar serving again.  I instructed him to pray about it.  “Just be open to it and see what God wants you to do,” I told him.

My altar boy  (in stained glass effect)
            After that the subject came up again a few times, so it was not too surprising when my son told me one night at bedtime that he was pretty sure God was calling him to be an altar boy.   He did not sound excited about it, in fact he seemed to accept the call a little begrudgingly but he was willing to accept the call.

            A few weeks ago he began his training.  He was finally ready and he was excited.  Today my son served his first Mass!  There he was, in his cassock and surplice, reverently holding the candle and assisting the priest.  It was beautiful.  And it was well worth the wait, especially because I am pretty sure there was a much deeper lesson in letting him listen for God’s call instead of just insisting he do what mom says.  

            If God ever calls my son to even more ministry in the Church, to even greater service on the altar, I hope he will remember this lesson and heed God’s call again.

1 comment:

  1. Great job, Mom! I think I would have been anxious to push...but I love the idea that you allowed him to mull it over...then pray over it...and finally answer that call himself. I do think we, as parents/guardians, etc. do need to continue to support and encourage our children to listen for that opportunity to serve. I know growing up, my mother always impressed upon me how proud and honored she would be if one of us were to answer the call to the Priesthood or Religious life. I think in today's noisy culture...the call is still's just so hard for as many to hear and then answer.

    Blessings to your sweet boy!




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