13After the wise men were gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up! Flee to Egypt with the child and his mother,” the angel said. “Stay there until I tell you to return, because Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.”
14That night Joseph left for Egypt with the child and Mary, his mother, 15and they stayed there until Herod’s death. This fulfilled what the Lord had spoken through the prophet: “I called my Son out of Egypt.”e
New Year’s Day…and my fingers are left speechless. I’m creating a post that is ‘saving a space’ here, for mothers. Father Jerome Lavigne delivered a homily at Mass this morning that caused me to weep/blubber/cry. Once again, I was put in touch with the lovely idea of the mother of God…Mary…the one who carried her son in the ‘tabernacle of her womb’, nurtured him when he was a toddler, taught him to say his prayers…sat with him in his ultimate pain. It all causes me to miss and love my mother…to think about my beautiful grandmothers and to wish to be a better parent.
Russian icon depicting Saint John the Baptist, from a Deësis cycle.
“The Deësis is a traditional iconic representation of Christ in Majesty or Christ Pantocrator enthroned, carrying a book, and flanked by the Virgin Mary and St. John the Baptist, and sometimes other saints and angels. Mary and John, and any other figures, are shown facing towards Christ with their hands raised in supplication on behalf of humanity.” (Source: Wikipedia)
It was a difficult day yesterday. I’m not here to write about the difficulties, just to say that it was a difficult day. I was very late getting over to the church to paint and was a wee bit frazzled about pretty much everything; and then I was blessed with a parking-lot conversation with my priest, Father Kevin Tumback. I then had opportunity to see three icons that were brought back from Bethlehem by parishoners who recently enjoyed a pilgrimage to the holy land. I was overcome by the luminosity of the three pieces instantaneously. While people were speaking nearby, I had already entered into the images and was only aware of their voices as background, but not really aware of what they were saying. I had already entered into the icons and for me, the art spoke and my many concerns drifted away and were silenced. Art, particularly liturgical art these days, is an entry point to all that is spirit within me. As much as making art, I am enjoying the meditation that is provided while looking at art. It is such an engaging experience.
There is a long history about icon writing and I won’t begin to write about that here today, but I will, as soon as possible, take a photograph of the icons that will be installed in our church, St. Albert the Great Parish. I am excited to learn as much as I can about the various styles of icon writing and what they tell of our church and its people.
The strawberries have multiplied so much the past few years that my son, James and I are going to build a second bed.
The day that I heard the news that Mary had died, I was crushed. I was painting a huge wall mural in the Chapel at the time. I started writing her name on the wall over and over again and planned my drive to Lethbridge. I would join the music ministry for her ‘Good-bye’ Mass.
After the church service, Pat and I went over to Mary’s house and cleaned up the gardens. Mary was an amazing gardener! I’ll never forget what she looked like. She was so short and spritely, but she would dawn her hat and her gloves and spend hours stooping over her vegetable gardens. Never have you seen a harvest like the one that would yield from Mary’s garden.
As a reminder of all that she had created in the spring and in the summer, I dug up four of her strawberry plants and a couple of her large irises and planted them in the evening, when I arrived home from Lethbridge. I remember the mosquitoes were biting like crazy that year, as well! Thank you, Mary…for being an amazing mother, for your spirituality and for your garden. You are a part of my own ‘magic’ in the backyard…always will be!