This week we managed to head out early enough to get a potty break in before the 9 a.m. Mass started. Jacob had Mommy go with him this time, so Lucy and I found some seats at the back of the church.
Again we had the children's liturgy across the street in the parish hall. Jacob initially did not want to go, but when he saw me taking Lucy, he decided to check it out for a while. We walked across the street and found a line at the door. The door was locked. We waited a bit while someone who knew the code came and let us in. The preschool/toddler room is the first on the right. Lucy and I shared a seat while Jacob literally stood by, ready to leave.
The nice lady who led the children's liturgy was helped out by her son. I should say "helped out," emphasis on quotation marks, because the first thing he did was put a rubber snake on the little crucifix at the front of the room. He wasn't being malicious or mischevious, just bored. She told the story of Noah's Ark. She had a little wooden ark (her son said it was too small to be a real ark). All the kids came and took an animal out. Except Jacob. Lucy picked out a camel. At the part of the story where the animals get on the ark, she called different animals to come up and get in. The child was supposed to make the animal's noise, but that quickly changed into the whole room making the animal's noise. This became too loud for Jacob. He asked to leave. Lucy had already put her camel in (nobody knew what noise to make), so I acquiesced.
Back at the church, we walked into the middle of the sermon. Jacob and Lucy were squirmy then and for the rest of the Mass. They joined in a little bit for the Our Father and did give the Sign of Peace. Lucy luckily never made actual hand contact since she had been sucking on her fingers during Mas and they were pretty wet. Communion went well, as did the end of Mass. We didn't light candles but we did go back across the street for tea and cakes.
Jacob was a little disappointed that they weren't selling toys and games like a few weeks ago. Nevertheless, he enjoyed running around and eating two cookies. We sat with one mom (originally from France) who had lots of advice on things for preschoolers to do during the week. We will definitely be taking advantage of new resources in town.
I only heard a bit of the sermon. Father reread his sermon from ten years ago, i.e. his sermon right after the 9/11 attacks happened. I only heard the very end of that. He then gave some reflections and comments. He doubted the value of the war on terror, that the money and lives sacrificed were not worth it for what he deemed no results at all. Instead of considering it an act of war, he said the attack should have been considered a criminal act and prosecuted appropriately. My objections to this sermon are (1) legal prosecution doesn't really seem effective and it has also involved very dubious moral practices (e.g., prisoner treatment and interrogation procedures), (2) for a sermon the emphasis should be on theological rather than political concerns. Certainly he could discuss political actions but the lens used to sharpen the image should bring out the faith's view. We did the appropriate thing during the petitions though, praying for the victims of the attacks and for a return of peace in the world. May we be close to God always and learn to look with His eyes and love with His heart.