|Icon received on our First Anniversary --|
note that Mary is holding yarn and knitting needles!
Today is a great feast in the Church -- the Feast of the Annunciation. It is such a feast that most all Catholics will not abstain from meat today (unless they want to). The Feast of the Annunciation is very near and dear to my heart as it is also my wedding anniversary.
Here's the story, in case you haven't heard it before:
On May 26, 1992, my husband Mike died of cancer. He died four days after his 31st birthday, leaving me with a just-about three-year-old boy and an 11-month-old baby girl. I was devastated, but I had the love and care of family and friends who helped me through the time. I was climbing the corporate ladder at Delta Air Lines and they couldn't have been kinder.
But more importantly, I had the Blessed Mother to wrap her mantle around me ... to pray for grace to see me through the ordeal ... the loneliness ... the uncertainties. God was always near.
Fast-forward five years later and I decide to we need to jump-start our lives again. It is time. I prayed to God and through Our Lady's intercessions, we ended up in Raleigh, NC just when the principal of a parochial school needed a computer teacher (which I could do) and had space for my two parochial school children!
How good is God!
At this parochial school, there was a certain middle-school science teacher with whom I became instantly attracted. Something pulled us together -- we credit our prayers to the Blessed Mother. He was a conservative Catholic and so was I. He had been married (and annulled) and had older children who didn't live with him and so accepted mine with open arms.
On March 25, 1998, we married in the parish church of the school where we taught ... with some of our family-member and many students, faculty and staff in attendance. Friends came from near and far to wish us well and witness to this near-miraculous event.
And so, as our 14th year together begins today: we renew our "I Do's", our fiat to live together in the state of Holy Matrimony, to assent to our Lord's will and abandoning ourselves to Divine Providence.
Thank you, dear Lord, for the past 13 years ... for being with us on this journey together.
Thank you, Blessed Mother, for your intercessory prayers and always wrapping us in your mantle of love.
Thank you, dear Rick, for loving me even when I am not at my most lovable and thank you, too, for the three "littles" we have together and the blended family we continue to love and pray for daily.