I went, yesterday, to Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. I try very hard to focus on His brilliance, to still my mind, to let my soul be refreshed. I often fail miserably. My mind goes a hundred miles an hour worrying about things yet to be and fretting about things already past. I was thinking yesterday about First Holy Communion gifts. Two of the girls in my Wednesday night class made their First Holy Communion last Saturday and I got them each a small book as a keepsake.
I remember the white children's Missal I got when I made my First Holy Communion. It had a snap closure and a zipper pouch on the back for my rosary beads, also white of course. Only the boys had black. Back in the day, those were the two options for First Holy Communion gifts. I took my Missal to Mass with me every Sunday after that until I was old enough, at Confirmation, to have a St. Joseph's Daily Missal like my mom's. I wanted one for the longest time and often begged to borrow hers. This was a request rarely granted. Finally, I got one of my own.
I knew how special this Missal, and the words contained therein, were because of my mom's Missal.
The top middle drawer of my mom and dad's dresser was a small drawer. All the middle column of drawers were small, flanked on either side by large drawers, one side my mom's and the other side my dad's. In the top middle drawer were my mother's handkerchiefs, either embroidered or lace-edged, a lace mantilla from the pre-Vatican II days, her good scarves that my sister, Mary, gave her, her gloves and, on top of all of these Sunday treasures, her Missal. Her rosary beads she kept in her purse, always.
The Missal was covered in black leather with gold-edged, tissue paper thin pages. There was a red satin ribbon to mark your place. Mom's Missal also contained a lot of holy cards - some prayer cards, some funeral cards, some that were gifts from us kids; remembrances of family, known and unknown, who had gone before.
My mom treated her Missal and the family Bible with such reverence that I remember it still.
I treat all books carefully. It's how I was raised. I think, though, that I need to find some of the reverence again.