Thursday, May 1, 2008

The "Mary" Month of May

I spent the evening with the Infant of Prague this week. When I arrived at the front desk to do my monthly turn at the Mount switchboard I noticed something out of the corner of my eye and when I turned, lo and behold, there was a 20" Infant of Prague statue standing along the wall--formally dressed in gold shimmering robes. I hadn't seen one in years!

When I entered community some of the pre-Vatican II devotions were still hanging on and one of the older sisters was in charge of the large Infant of Prague statue that was on a pedestal on a landing at the turn of a long set of stairs. She had one of those small, ladies overnight bags of the time, chock-full of liturgically correct clothing. The idea, I believe, was to match the change in garments with the liturgical seasons, feasts, etc.

I had not grown up in a family that held to many Catholic devotions as such, and had never seen anything like this, but it fascinated me, of course.

Sure enough, the one I saw last week had a small plastic case with it and when my friend and I opened it, there they were--a whole wardrobe of outfits! It was like being caught in the Twilight Zone!

Anyway, as this is May 1, the traditional month of Mary, in Catholic and even other Christian circles, it brings to mind devotions--of which those to Mary were always at the top of the popularity chart. We still keep a couple--appropriately contemporary--but I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of sisters keep their own this month, too. Even I stare at a beautiful statue of the Blessed Mother right here in my office and the statue in our chapel is one of the best I've seen. And, yes, I do carry a rosary in my purse--but no miniature Infant of Prague!

Happy 1st
"Light Through

May 1, 2007-
May 1, 2008

Our Paschal candle.

Photo by Stephanie Schmidt, OSB