|Yes, that is my actual face. lol. #AshTag|
We got to our parish about 20-25 minutes before Mass was scheduled to begin. That was done purposely because we have to rely on that public transportation system we have until we get our car returned. (side note: mechanic said later today. Fingers crossed!) We thought we'd just sit in the back and wait but we found that they were doing a short prayer and distributing ashes before the Mass began. We heard them do the Confiteor in Spanish as we walked towards the back doors and walked into the church while the Spanish-speaking priest did the blessing of the ashes in Spanish. We were going to sit when he began to ask if anyone could read the blessing in English. Everyone looked around and I found myself saying "I'll do it, Fr." Who am I and what have I done with Emmy? lol. Anyway, since I was just reaching the pew when I said it, I didn't have time to put things down. I ended up walking up with my tote bag and book.
I would be lying if I said my heart wasn't pounding as I read the prayer. I was trying to breathe properly while I read it and tried to focus on the fact that I was doing it for a greater good. I hate public speaking... with a passion. When I gave the valedictorian-style speech at my high school graduation, I shook. I hate the attention. It's extremely unlike me to volunteer to do anything, especially without thinking about it first. In fact, I honestly don't know what came over me. I didn't think about it. I just found myself saying "It'll do it, Fr." surprising myself in the process. Still, I read it without making a mistake (another miracle) and then headed back to my seat. Miracles do happen! lol.
Mass was great. I've never been to a proper bilingual Mass before but I enjoyed it, probably because I understood both languages without problem. Thanks for insisting that I be raised bilingual, Mom and Dad! After Mass we got our ashes and then we came back home. Did I finish everything I said I needed to finish before Lent? Nope. Two things are left over from my list as I type this out (it's currently Ash Wednesday; scheduling this post since I have stuff to do tomorrow as well). I'll get to them before I go to bed. They're not Lenten deal breakers. ;)
Anyway, when I got home I saw that the lovely folks at Magnificat got in contact with me about giving away one of their 2016 Lenten Companion apps for iPhone / iPod touch / iPad. I had actually put "look into Magnificat Lenten Companion" on my to-do list earlier this week so it worked out perfectly.
If you're wondering what it is, let me tell you. I have it downloaded on my iPod touch (since it goes everywhere with me), in my Lenten folder on the home page. The Lenten Companion has Morning, Evening, and Night prayers as well as Mass readings and Lenten meditations for every day of Lent. Other Lenten features include Chants for Lent and Easter, the Stations of the Cross, Prayers for Various Vocations, and much more. Sound like something you'd be interested in? Here's your chance to win a copy! Just scroll down to the bottom of the post and enter! Again, this is for the app, not the physical copy of it.
"But, wait, Lent already began!" you may be saying. True, but you can still use it for the rest of the days of Lent. Like I said, I was just contacted on Ash Wednesday or else I would've done it sooner. I also would've posted this yesterday except I fasted from social media all together and I didn't want to make this contest unfair by giving some people an additional day to enter so I waited to post this when it could be posted everywhere at the same time.
The contest will be over in a relatively short time (noon EST on Valentine's Day) because I didn't want some of y'all to go too far into Lent without having a chance to win this! If you don't win, I would highly recommend getting yourself a copy. No, no one is paying me to say this. As someone who has been super busy lately, I appreciate that this app is something I can take with me. I do have free time on the way to and from destinations and this is just perfect for a sort of mini retreat moment on the go. :)
Anyway, I still have a ton of stuff to do so I'm going to try to get that done.
I hope y'all had a great start to Lent!
As always, thanks for reading and God bless! :D
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