Sunday, February 19, 2012
There are seven Blessed Sacraments in Catholicism. I've experienced 5 so far(Baptism, Communion, Penance, Confirmation and Matrimony), but the last two (Holy Orders and Last Rites) are not ones that I wish to be around for anytime soon. Here is the Ave Maria Gift Shop on Stevens Avenue. The last time I was here a few years ago, J- and I were looking for St. Christopher medals. My good friends, Buddy and Skipper, lived in this house in the 50s and 60s. It felt kind of strange standing looking at medals in display cases in what was once their living room. Communion dresses for sale? I wondered where the girls got those perfectly white dresses. And where Mom and Dad shopped for my white suits for my First Communion and Confirmation, I have no idea. With Catholic churches St. Peters, St. Patricks, St. Josephs, St. Dominics and the Cathedral, all celebrating these rites of Catholic passage in the city proper each year, there must have been shops set aside for these religious fashions. I still have a picture in one of many photo albums of me marching in to St. Joseph's Church next to my friend Rocco on our way to be confirmed. I remember that day and the Confirmation breakfast that followed in the school hall like it happened yesterday. As I recall, the menu was a glass of juice, a small carton of white milk and an individual box of sugared cornflakes, served by overweight grandmothers in aprons. It was a special time.