We went into the Church and listened to Mass. The priest talked of something rich of wonderfulness, of God. Just before we left, the lector asked me personally among the people gathering, “Would you stay for Eucharistic Adoration?” I answered meekly, “I am sorry. I have to go pick up my daughter.” The lector said, “Just for a few moments perhaps?” It was clear, the lector wanted to have more people stay but I said, “Sorry. My daughter is home alone.”
As I left the group, I couldn’t stop but think of them. I wanted to stay and besides, they had a group of children bustling about in a room where I am sure my daughter would like to attend. So, my husband and I decided to pick up our daughter and go back to the Church.
We came back! The children’s room was filled to the brim and the kids were busybodies surrounding the teacher. The teacher was crouched over writing name labels for the children to wear. When it came to my daughter who had by now lined up to get her name label, the teacher said, “You do not belong to this parish!” Then the teacher turned to me and said, “Besides you didn’t pay!”
Not knowing what was going on, my daughter walked over to me. We walked over to the other room which was filled with the children’s parents. Some of the parents spotted us and told the lector that we had come back. The lector welcomed us and sat us in three seats in front of a video recorder. The lector and the parishioners wanted to make a short and welcoming recording that they could keep in their parish.
Saddened by the teacher, I spoke into my daughter’s ear as she tussled her play adornments she wore today, “You have to tell them that you have been turned away and cannot stay.” My daughter sat in the spotlight of the camcorder, unphased and cheerful.” The lector and parents were attentive and moved their seats much closer into a tight circle, anticipating my daughter’s words.
My daughter did this. Dressed in adornments, a purple-colored necklace, a green scarf, a white-colored lily in her hair, and some play rings in her fingers, she bent over two ladies who were sitting to her right and left. She found their hands and kissed them gently. Then, she walked around the tightly knit group of parents and began taking her adornments off – her purple-colored necklace, her green scarf, her white-colored lily, and her play fings. The parents quizzically looked eagerly for my daughter to explain. I was still sad. Then she came into the spotlight and said lightheartedly, “I took these all off for God.” God does not want us to come to Him with things that make us look pretty outwardly. He wants us to come to Him as our plain true selves – simple and faithful. Imagine how much as a young girl, she understood this. Saint Therese of the Child Jesus understood this, too.