Thursday, December 19, 2013

And the Glory of the Lord Shone About Them...

Anyone knows that the most successful theatre presentation is a Christmas pageant starring first- through third-graders. Parents become blithering, gushing fools; cameras, iPads and video cameras compete for space as if you were at a press conference. No matter if the kids sing off-key, blow their lines, or even knock over the donkey in the stable: they are kids, which means they can do no wrong. The cute factor goes off the charts, and we sit there with grins as wide as the Brooklyn Bridge, tears in our eyes, eating up every moment of it.

Even Charles Schulz couldn't resist the temptation with "A Charlie Brown Christmas" (and to his credit, he even got past CBS with Linus reciting the text of St. Luke's gospel). There they were, doing their Christmas play thing. And by the time Linus takes the stage, we're a mass of emotion.

So when my son, Nathan, invited me and Michele up to Harlem to watch St. Mark's Catholic School's Annual Christmas pageant, we hummed a little bit of "Sign Me Up," hopped onto the subway and headed to 138th Street.

It seems to me that the Church is always at her best when she is most vulnerable. Maybe that's why Jesus made sure to let children come to him. Maybe that's why Pope Francis is making such a point – daily – about realigning ourselves with the poor, marginalized, and prophetic voices about us. Maybe that's why I am so transformed, weekly, by an amazing group of college students who allow the vulnerable yet transformative power of song to touch people's hearts and souls when they sing.

The pictures I took at St. Mark's yesterday were graciously allowed on this post by their superb principal, Mr. Antwan Allen. I'll tell you this – if you want to get closer to God this Christmas season, if you want a huge dose of the glory of the Lord, spend some time with children. Or the homeless. Or find a way to loosen up your vocal chords and become prophetic in the choir loft. The glory is all around us! And just as Scripture says, it is ushered in by the children of the world.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:3rd Ave,New York,United States

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