12 December 2006

Tuesday church, v0002

This Tuesday church thing is turning into more fun than a barrel of primates.

So, I get my behind up and to church this morning to discover:
a) 150 micro-people dressed in blue, white, and (green) tartan.
b) it's the feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

I live in a town with a military base, in fact the church is just a couple blocks from the south entrance. Military people, in general, represent a cross section of America both culturally and racially. Therefore, with the church being so close to the base, we have a more racially diverse congregation than many, and the school is probably more diverse than that. So it's not just 150 lilly white towheads, but 150 kids of all kinds (well maybe not many native Australians)... so cute.

I love the long history of the church, and I must say the miracle of Our Lady of Guadalupe is one of my favorites. The short story is (in 1531 shortly after the Spanish conquest of Mexico) as Juan Diego hurried to town to get a priest for his dying uncle Mary appeared to him, not as a white westerner, but as a native American, and spoke to Juan Diego in his language. She told him to go to the bishop and tell him to build a shrine on the hill she was standing on. Naturally, the Spanish bishop did not believe him, and much humorness ensued until Juan Diego provided the bishop with a sign he had asked him to provide, miracles in abundance.

The important part of Our Lady of Guadalupe is that Mary chose to appear to Juan Diego not as a conquering caucasian, but as a native like himself, speaking to him in his language. She showed those involved that she was for everyone, the church was for everyone, that Jesus came for each, and for all. Who is our neighbor? Who makes up the church? Just like those cute kids this morning making up the school, we all have a part to play in the body of Christ.

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