This afternoon I celebrated the Ascension Thursday Mass for our Queen of Angels School Community at the school. Prior to Mass, the school, whose title is "Queen of Angels", honored Mary in this month of May with a traditional May Crowning. With all the youngsters present, plus faculty and staff, and with many family attending, a crown of flowers was placed upon the image of Mary by the one chosen for the task, escorted by the crown bearer, and accompanied by the youngsters who had or will still this weekend receive their First Holy Communion. These youngsters, dressed in their First Communion finery, placed flowers before Mary's statue and shared a scripture, a poem, and prayers and songs in her honor. It was beautiful. A tribute to one, who with the others, saw her Son ascend into heaven and then spent her time in prayer awaiting of the Paraclete.
I told the kids that the day on that mountaintop was somewhat like moving on, like graduation. We know that things will never be the same, that we will miss that which we have known and loved, but that the future - uncertain though it is - awaits us. Things will be different. But we have been prepared for the future and empowered to make the best of it. As I said this morning, it is a time of sorrowful remembrance and of joyful anticipation.
I received my official registration confirmation for the 2012 National Pastoral Musicians National Convention in July ... this year in Pittsburgh. I had such a great time in Louisville last year that I wanted to make sure and get to this year's Convention. The added blessing is the location in Pittsburgh. If you involved in liturgy as musician, presider or in planning, you might want to consider attending. The speakers are top notch, the music outstanding, the exhibits great, and the experience of thousands enthusiastically praying together unforgettable.