I've worked with our church parish second graders for the last several years, helping to prepare them for their first celebration of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. One of the ideas that my cohort Michelle and I present to the children is that of a daily video camera rewind. What we mean is that, in the evening, we might review our day as if it's all on dvd - we can replay events, conversations, and decisions to determine if we acted/ responded as Christ would ask us to behave. Were we patient as a parent dealt with a younger child? Were we forgiving to a sibling or friend? Little reviews of our day can really help us put our needs for improvement into perspective. This is information we can then take to the celebration of Reconciliation. And it is, indeed, a celebration to further understand and appreciate God's love for us. Make no mistake.
When the children were very young, as Irish Jig is, we started with "what made you happy today?" and "what made you sad?" Those simple questions are a precursor to the larger picture. The answers are, of course, all over the map and are all hilarious. I would usually wrap up the prayer time with a favorite hymn or lullaby. I love to sing to my babies, and have sung to them all (still do to even the older ones sometimes :)
Singing together prior to a recent nap
Recently, though, Irish Jig put her hands across my mouth while I was singing and demanded a different song. Her garbled and tired vocabulary took a few moments of interpretation, but I finally realized she was saying Glory to God at church song. Huh? Oh, The Gloria! Recently revamped in response to the Liturgiam Authenticam, we've spent the last months learning a new version to be sung during Masses. The Mass of Renewal version we use is definitely catchy and not something I'd have thought of for a bedtime routine, but the sentiment is truly appropriate. So, why not?
And so, evenings in the house now resound with Glory To God! Irish Jig always sings along and I've heard a few voices tuning in from rooms far away. It's the prayer that says it all for us Catholics. "We praise you, we bless you, we adore you." So much so that we long to always be in partnership with you and that means reviewing our day and asking for help where needed.
I never thought I could get tired of singing a lullaby (some of my favorites come from this cd), but hearing a tiny little voice strive to hit the notes and rhythms of this awesome prayer is truly the best lullaby for this Mama's heart.