Monday, April 20, 2009

The new week

Yesterday I joined some of my co-workers for the christening of their new baby. The ceremony was held in a Catholic Church at 2 o'clock. It is hot here in the Central Valley - in the 90's already. The church had fans and it perhaps air conditioning as it felt reasonably cool inside. I have not been inside a Catholic Church in many years. I was struck by how casually dressed the participants were. Gone are the suits and ties, covered heads, nylons and dresses. Today there was the wailing of babies as they were anointed with oils and washed with the waters of a christian baptism. I thought it was a sweet sound. New life. My work is with elders and the end of old life. Please know that I do not wish to do other work - I believe that bearing witness to the end of days of our elders is its own special blessing and grace. Still I found that baby noise as comforting as some people seemed to think it was annoying. I was struck by all the instruction to the participants to be guardians of the faith. There were 12 babies being baptised. The family that I was joining there is from the Philippines as were several others, there were numerous Mexican families, one African-American and one white baby. The church of today. The church was an indicator of the beauty and the problems that beset California and the country.

Later I and several of my co-workers attended a luncheon given by the family of the newly christened babe. They served Chinese food. That was a treat. I enjoyed sitting with the people for whom that I must normally direct, provide instruction, goals and manage. There is a joy in being a visitor/guest. Three of the staff, nurses from the Punjab, also came to the luncheon. They were so beautiful in their national style of dressing. Regal in the way they moved. How nice to see everyone dressed for real life and out of the today-to-day scrubs that usually identify them.

Somehow yesterday's celebration of family and new life makes the tedious business of getting on with the work at hand seem less a burden and more a simple part of engaging in life.

So let's get on with it. Let's celebrate having another day no matter where it takes us - we are here might as well count blessings while we pass through time.


hillybillyfarmgirl said...

I like reading your stories! Interesting the part about the church... I was raised catholic but I quit attending many years ago. I believe there is "a great spirit" I call it, but the church is not for me...

WR said...

I'm no t a Catholic but did go to a Catholic boarding school for several years long ago. Knowing about someones religion is a bit like being bilingual...which I think you are