The other day, I took myself on a date. The best part was, I ended up somewhere completely unexpected!
I had originally gone to an art gallery with lovely grounds. I took photos of all sorts of things but mostly, flowers. A lovely stair banister also caught my eye, and I had to snap a shot.
As I was leaving the gallery, I found myself on a street I’m not usually on and remembered that years ago, when my husband and I took long walks in the neighborhood (and also lost 50 pounds that year, only to gain it back. Ugh. Damn the memories *I don’t want* that creep in) we ran across a beautiful place to sit on the back property of a Catholic church. I remembered that it was very welcoming and peaceful, surrounded by pine trees.
So, as I passed the church this time, I pulled into the parking lot. That’s my Ruby parked next to a cool tree and of course, the church itself. The back of it actually.
I walked to the spot I remembered and immediately felt a wave of… peace.
I’m not Catholic but I have a deep, abiding respect for all religions. Also, I’ve been Episcopalian which is celebrated with a mass very much like the Catholics. These days, I consider myself simply “Christian” but not fervently so. But I digress.
The first thing I saw was this statue. Is Rachel weeping over stillborn babies, abortions, or babies who die as infants? It doesn’t matter what *I* believe, I simply saw it for what it was… a mourning mother… of one child or the earth’s children… doesn’t matter. She’s beautiful.
Beyond Rachel, Mother Mary, an altar, a wooden cross, flowers left by others and welcoming benches.
And so, I crossed myself (Episcopalians do that, too) and sat quietly. I enjoyed the heat of the afternoon sun and relished the moment in the shadows of the pines that surrounded me. Then I prayed, sang a hymn, and thanked God that I stopped. I took some photos, obviously.
A really neat thing I noticed is that the cross had rosary beads draped around it! How beautiful is that?
There was no graffiti, no overturned benches or broken vases. It was as if God Himself blessed this space…
… and probably a little group of people from the church made sure …
It remains as it is, a sacred place.
So while no, a church isn’t a normal “Take yourself on a date” locale… it can be! And it can be absolutely healing, self-soothing and beautiful.
Go therefore and find ye-self a sacred corner… ye shall be blessed!