Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The disorderly chasuble.

These head holes are rather ornate, therefore
the men are not wearing chasubles. QED

When a person believes in Divine Providence, or any sort of supernaturally ordered universe, ordinary events take on special meaning.

One day I was driving to Mass and, glancing at my clock, saw that it was virtually impossible to get there on time. And I hate being late, especially for Mass. But on this particular day I was really not looking forward to the walk of shame, having to traipse past the priest while scanning the crowd for the last empty pew. Some people don't seem to mind walking in late, and perhaps that's because they have good reasons. But I never have a good reason. I always could have set my alarm clock a few minutes earlier, or gotten dressed a little faster or forgone watching that obscure Youtube video a friend posted on Facebook. Anyway, I really hate being late.

So, yet again, I started calmly but purposefully praying that somehow things would work out in my favor so that I could get in before the priest. (No, I am not above asking God to free me from the consequences of my foibles.) I pulled into the parking lot and as I walked toward the church I saw the priest ahead of me and knew I was just a little bit too late--RATS!!--but then another man stopped him!! I looked long enough to see the man adjusting Father's unruly chasuble*, delaying him enough for me to sneak in first. So I was able to make it to a pew shortly before the dinner bell rang to signal everyone to stand up for the entrance antiphon. (The bell probably has a more official name, but they didn't teach us that in Jesus Class.)

And I was struck by how strange it is that, again and again, I arrive somewhere exactly on time. If I had been stopped at one more or one fewer traffic light I would not have been perfectly punctual. Now, until I have time to perform a rigorous statistical study, I'll go ahead and assume that this perceived punctuality is quite significant and surely indicates Divine Intervention. Is it not the American way to persist in one's assumptions for as long as convenient? At any rate, I'd like to thank God for disorderly chasubles!

*According to my laptop dictionary, a chasuble is "a sleeveless outer vestment worn by a Catholic or High Anglican priest when celebrating Mass, typically ornate and having a simple hole for the head." Note to self: the head hole is NOT ornate. It is simple.

1 comment:

  1. God works with the timing! He intervenes on behalf of his loved ones.