A happy mother’s day

13 May
And today I really am a happy mother.  We had a very nice afternoon at the Takhini Hot Springs (mothers get in for half price!) and a short but scenic hike after a nice supper out there.  But the big event of the day was the beautiful celebration we participated in this morning: Jade’s baptism.
 
We were very blessed to have Michael’s parents here to take part in the celebration with us.  They also kindly agreed to stand in for Jade’s godparents, Nemmy and Tim, who sent their own thoughts and prayers to share.  It was such a wonderfully personal celebration, even though it took place during a regular mass.
 
Everyone agreed that Father Claude is an amazing person and an amazing priest.  He speaks with such animation that even those who don’t understand French find his masses fascinating.  He solicits participation from the congregation (but doesn’t put people on the spot) and includes the children in a way that makes them happy to be at church.  For Jade’s baptim, he managed to incorporate Michael’s love of geocaching with the text of the Golden Rule, which we believe to be the most important teaching of the church.  In our prepatory discussions with Father Claude, Michael observed that this teaching is common throughout many world religions, and we had a wonderful discussion on the subject.
 
One of the most moving parts of the mass was after Father Claude let us explain our thoughts on baptism as a welcoming into the church.  He made the sign of the cross on her forehead, and invited all of us to do the same as a symbol of welcoming her into the church.  Not only did our family and friends get to do this, but Father Claude carried her into the congregation so that everyone who wanted to could do the same.  Michael and his parents and I all stood there with tears in our eyes as we watched.
 
Father Claude started his homily by talking about how Michael loves geocaching, and how there is "treasure" hidden all over the world.  Then he picked four kids out of the congregation to find four silver envelopes hidden in the church, one in each of the four directions.  The envelopes had gold labels on them that said "La règle d’or".  In each envelope, there was a piece of paper that represented a different world religion and its version of the Golden Rule, which each child read aloud.  The children gave the envelopes to Jade (who enjoyed playing with them!), and then Father Claude helped her to find a box that he had hidden for her, a place to put all the envelopes for safekeeping and future reference.  Inside the box, there was a fifth silver envelope, in which was the Christian version of the Golden Rule: "Treat others the way you would have them treat you: this sums up the law and the prophets." (Matthew 7:12)  Michael and I were asked to read it, in English and in French.
 
For the actual baptism, we managed to get some water from the South Nahanni River (courtesy of our friend George from Nahanni Butte), which was mingled with the water from the Yukon River that was used at Easter.
 
I could go on and on with other details that made the whole ceremony so special, but I’m not a good enough storyteller and I know this narration may already have gotten a bit tedious.  So I will just say again what a happy mother I am today, proud and grateful to everyone who made this such a special day.
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2 Responses to “A happy mother’s day”

  1. Lindsay May 15, 2007 at 12:27 pm #

    That sounds so moving. Wish we could have been there.

  2. TheWhiteSeal May 1, 2008 at 3:14 am #

    Hi there,I just found your blog, it has been a really interesting read! On the subject of labels, a while back i managed to find a british labels company who sold me a batch of plain labels for a really low price

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