Yesterday I celebrated Mass at Queen of Angels School, our Regional Catholic School. It is always an interesting and uplifting experience. Yesterday's liturgy was planned by the kindergarten class, and they did the introduction, the intercessions, the offertory gifts and a small presentation after communion. They were so cute ... and small. They needed a special microphone at their height up on stage (we celebrate Mass in the auditorium). Yesterday was the feast of Saint George.
I spoke to them of Saint George - that he lived about 1,700 years ago, that he was a friend of Jesus and loved him very much, and that because of that there were those that made him pay for that love with his life. Since we were wearing red vestments, I told them that it reminded me of the queen of hearts in "Alice in Wonderland" who was a nasty person and whose favorite expression was "Off with their heads". Poor George suffered the same fate.
I also told them that tradition pictures Saint George as a knight in shining armor on horseback, with sword and shield, slaying the dragon. I said that I'm not sure where that image came from. My theory was that in the 12th century there was a shy or mediocre knight named George who needed a saint as a patron that would inspire him to greatness, so he modeled his name saint as a knight like himself and had him slaying the evil dragon, the symbol of the devil. Who knows ... that theory may have some truth to it.
I also shared that the previous Sunday was a Day of Prayer for Vocations (at the school we begin every prayer time with our Diocesan prayer for vocations) and I thanked them for their prayers. I pointed out that we will have three men ordained as priests this June, thanks to their prayers. I told them that my vocation started a long time ago ... in fact, my earliest memories of wanting to be a priest goes back to when I was in kindergarten. I asked them to prayer, and think about priesthood or religious life, or however God is calling them to serve in the Church. It is never too early to plant the seed.
We had a wonderful celebration, and I thank all involved in our great school.