The Neighborhood Liturgies


Hail Mary Full Of Grapes? Sharing Grace Together

I grew up in the Catholic Church and like any good Catholic I went to catechism. I found it very boring because being little kids we didn't really understand what it was all about. One of the hardest parts of catechism was when we had to memerize the prayers. We had to practice at home, in catechism and then we would be tested on them by being brought in the hallway with the teacher. That's a lot of practicing for a prayer! When it came time to memorize the Hail Mary prayer I definitely had some trouble remembering the words.

Finally the day came that I had to recite the the Hail Mary. I was walked into an empty hallway and I sat my 6 year old butt in a blue plastic chair. I sat up straight, chin back and said "Hail Mary full of GRAPES the lord is with thee..."! WRONG! I remember looking into the empty hallway because I couldn't remember what to say. I was too young (probably too embarrassed) to remember what the teacher's reaction was but the teacher told my mom. Almost 20 years later  and its a story that is still being told at family gatherings. 

Eventually I got it right. My teacher worked with me and I made it through catechism alive.

I still get caught up when I say certain prayers. Growing up Catholic was difficult for me because I didn't really understand the way the stories were being told! They weren't told like the other Sunday School songs for us to remember the stories. We had to read it straight from the Bible out loud to the class not an easy reading bible. Sometimes I think in our faith it's okay to mess things up. It's ok to take things line by line to fully grasp what it means! Even if that means to click the message version on the Bible app (like I do), or to say prayers over and over again until we get them right. Not just to get them right but to receive them in grace.

It takes all of our faith to be the church and it's our shared grace that holds us together. Whether it's learning prayers or serving each other it's better to do it together and laugh along the way. We might not understand everything all the time but together we will make it.

May we all come together in Christ and remember give each other lots of grapes. I mean grace, in the process. 

Allie P.

Charles PorterComment