Saturday, December 6, 2014

Feast of St. Nicholas 2014

After a late night of birthday celebration, the feast of St. Nicholas started bright and early with a Rorate Mass at a nearby parish. This pre-dawn Mass, held in 'media nocte' (middle of the night), is  lit solely by candles. This Mass is an ancient church custom held during Advent in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Our diocese held its first Rorate Mass since the Council of Vatican II only two years ago and now we have had several. Exemplifying what a special Mass this is, a dozen college students drove four hours overnight to be there today!

John serving the Rorate Mass

Photo credit: John Cosmas

Photo credit: John Cosmas

Photo credit: John Cosmas

Photo credit: John Cosmas

Please click here to see all of John Cosmas' photos of the Mass.

Unfortunately, despite my best efforts, there is no possibility that Mama will sleep past others getting up early and, in fact, I woke up before them at 3:47 a.m., my internal clock alone telling me that the boys had to get up at four o'clock and were they up? John would be serving and had he clipped and cleaned his fingernails? Would he see the clothes I laid out?

Mama once awake never goes back to sleep.

Because Chris and John were absent, we didn't wake up to St. Nicholas celebrations. The boys joined a group of 17 people, including the priest, for a great breakfast at the ol' IHOP. Then, the children and I met them at our parish for a ten o'clock event with our pastor dressed up as the saint himself. A fun tradition!

Old Saint Nick!

St. Nicholas read us a story about himself and one about St. Lucia

Me and my baby boy

At one shoe per child, there were a lot of children there!

Then when we arrived home, mysteriously the shoes had been filled and gifts from St. Nick waiting for everyone!

The girls finally received their Christmas jumpers.

The children were, as one might say, excited  . . .

Seeing these joy-filled faces helps make up for how short on sleep all of us are, irritable and snappish, overwhelmed with tasks, and very nauseated Mama doing her best and really wishing it were better.


  1. Look at those smiles! You can't fake that joy. Glad we saw everyone today :) -Emiliann W.

  2. That Mass sounds beyond incredible!! ....I know what you mean about "wishing it were better..." ...I think we just love our children so much and want them desperately to know that...I got home really, really late from food shopping last night and had picked up a few, small items for each child in addition to the gold coins I had....I debated for a few minutes about wrapping the items, but did the math (4 items each times 4 kids) and said I just can't....I'm just too exhausted...and I said "maybe next year..."....but as I suspected they didn't mind unwrapped gifts this morning and were very excited.....but still I felt kind of badly.....know that you are such a good momma, and I hope you have a blessed rest of Advent.